Above is Taj Mahal Quartzite Countertop
Often times my clients get confused between Quartz and Quartzite. As I tend to specify both on almost all projects, it is hard to determine which I am referring too. Both of these products are extremely durable and have been significant influences on the design industry. For this post I will be exploring the differences and pros and cons on both.
Quartzite is a natural material that is typically the most durable natural material you can get. It is even stronger than granite which most people have considered the stronger stone for years. I say “typically” because once in awhile you come across a hybrid so to say where the quartzite is mixed with spots of softer stone which makes it easier to absorb and scratch. This is not very common but does happen and the slab yard will typically advise you if this is the case. What makes this material so strong is that it is one of naturals hardest and most dense natural stone. You can get this product in polished, honed or leathered and each finish has its own unique character. When going for a casual organic feel I would suggest the leathered finish. For a more refined look the polished is ideal. With the polished you see more depth within the stone almost like you are looking through the layers of the slab. The 3 characteristics that make this product better than quartz is: resistance to heat, scratches are less visible, it is a natural material so gives a more authentic feel.
Fireplace: Taj Mahal Quartzite
Kitchen Countertop in Sea Pearl Quartzite Polished
Kitchen Countertop in Victoria Falls Quartzite Leathered
Quartz on the other hand is a man-made material that is also very durable. Made of natural quartz minerals and resin that forms under intense heat and pressure, this material is nonporous. Making quartz stain resistant and easy to clean. No maintenance needed you will not have to seal, polish or condition this material. The nonporous characteristic also makes it great for sanitary needs, it doesn’t absorb germs and bacteria. The quartz is resistant to heat and scratches, but heat can damage the material since it is made of resin the heat will warp the affected area. Due to the solid color or texture that you usually find in quartz if scratches do occur, they often are hard to hide. I specify quartz on majority of my projects. This material is great for a modern to transitional design. For a traditional design I prefer the elegance of a natural material like quartzite, marble or granite. I have used in kitchens, bathrooms and laundry rooms. My clients that have quartz love the durability and easy to clean factors. What makes this product better than the quartzite is fact that you never have to seal, polish or condition.
This kitchen has a Pompeii Bianco Napoli with a 2.5” mitered edge
Above fireplace is Pompeii Bianco Stauario
This master bath is Pompeii Taj Mahal with a 6” mitered front detail