What is Travertine?
Travertine is a form of natural stone with properties similar to those of natural stone materials from the limestone family, such as slate, granite, marble, limestone, etc. Often found in the form of deposits near or within hot springs or limestone caves, travertine occurs as a result of rapid precipitation of calcium carbonate. It differs from other natural stones from the limestone family by its rock formation, hardness and appearance. It usually features concentric bands or fibrous appearance and comes in white, cream-colored, tan and rusty varieties. Perhaps its most distinctive characteristic is the pitted holes that occur on the stone’s surface. These can be attributed to the carbon dioxide gas which usually escapes from the rock formation, leaving holes in the stone.
Uses of Travertine
This natural stone has been used for thousands of years in art and architecture, and it continues to be extremely popular today in a wide range of applications in the building and construction industry. The Romans mined deposits of this stone and took advantage of its many positive characteristics to build remarkable temples, aqueducts, bath complexes and amphitheatres like the world’s most famous stadium Colosseum. It was also widely used for monuments, sculptures and other forms of art. Even today, travertine remains one of the most frequently utilized natural stones in modern architecture. It is very versatile and can be used practically anywhere to transform any area – both outdoors and indoors. Here’s an overview of the most common uses of travertine in the US:
Popular indoor applications for travertine:
- Travertine sinks
- Indoor split face walls
Popular outdoor applications for travertine:
- Pool steps
- Pool decks
- Outside stairs
- House walls
- Outdoor fireplaces
Travertine is one of the most popular and sought after tile materials, providing a touch of class and easy care to the home. It is available in many different styles and finishes, including tumbled, polished, chiseled, honed and filled finishes, as well as many different sizes, shapes and designs. The most common sizes for travertine tile are: 4x4", 6x6", 12x12", 18x18", and trim pieces. A standard travertine tile is 0.5" inches thick.
Travertine tiles have many applications, and their wide range of decorative options mean that they can be used virtually anywhere in the home. These tiles are popular for walk-in showers, tub surrounds, backsplashes, foyers and hallways, bathrooms, main living areas, bedrooms, kitchens, courtyards, driveways, patios, decking areas and pool surrounds where they are used to enhance the beauty and usefulness of the area. Their unmatched popularity can be attributed to travertine’s many advantages, which include:
- Natural beauty: It is naturally beautiful tile material that has more of a classic, rustic look to it that will fit in with just about any decor. By using this tile material, you can make a beautiful statement in your living and dining spaces as well as other areas in your home, thanks to its timeless and natural character.
- Durability: Polished and sealed travertine tile is quite durable and reliable. This tile material can last for decades before it needs restoration.
- Variety: Travertine tile comes in many beautiful colors – including walnut, gold, ivory and beige – that can add to the beauty of any room. It also comes in a variety of styles and finishes such as tumbled, matte, polished and brushed, ensuring you have options when it comes to choosing tiles to meet your needs, tastes and preferences.
- Ease of maintenance: Travertine is easy to clean, once it is fully impregnated with the right penetrating sealer. Applying a silicone-based sealant or any other good sealant makes this tile material both weatherproof and waterproof, preventing water, wine, oil or other liquids from penetrating this stone.
- Better grip: Travertine tile is less slippery when wet compared to other natural stone materials, and provides a better grip to prevent those nasty slip and fall accidents.
- Ease of installation: Travertine is also easy to cut, shape and fabricate. With this tile, it is very easy to fill spaces that are small or oddly shaped; and you can use it to cover virtually any type of surface.
- Environmentally friendly: Travertine is a natural material that is mined from quarries. Unlike other tile materials, it is not produced through a highly energy-intensive production process that causes harmful CO2 emissions.
This natural stone material is also a popular and highly advantageous option for countertops. Polished and sealed travertine is a durable, heat-resistant material that stands up to the tough wear of an active kitchen. Although it is more high maintenance than other countertop surfaces and must be cleaned every time there is any kind of spillage, travertine is one of the most aesthetically pleasing choices available and brings a warm, inviting feel to any kitchen design style. It is beautiful, elegant; often lending a classic Old World look to the kitchen. There are very few natural stone materials that can surpass the timeless and impressive look of travertine countertops. The stone’s natural variations in colors and textures make each countertop unique, and its "classic" nature means it never goes out of style. If you’re looking for a beautiful and stylish countertop material, then give travertine a look. You cannot go wrong with this stone.
This natural stone is hands down one of the best paving material for use both indoors and outdoors. It has so many advantages when used in pavers, something that has seen it become one of the most popular options. Firstly, travertine pavers are beautiful and will add a stunning feature to any home. These pavers usually feature natural colorations and patterns running throughout them, similar to the natural patterns found in marble or wood grain, giving the pavers unsurpassed natural beauty. They are available in a variety of colors and finishes, and the material will blend with most settings and the pavers can be arranged in numerous patterns.
Travertine pavers always lend a sense of timeless beauty. Since these pavers are adjustable to any shape or configuration, they offer a great option for taking the edge off an overly geometric landscape.
When used outdoors, travertine pavers don’t often require mortar or cement to set, and can be utilized in the construction of a pathway through a garden, a paved walkway around the swimming pool, or a patio.
Because this natural stone material is naturally resistant to both extreme heat and cold, travertine pavers can be used in locations that experience extreme temperatures. The stone is made up of minerals that give it a natural nonskid surface, even when wet. This natural non-slip surface makes these pavers a great choice for coping pavers for use around swimming pools or for indoor spaces such as bathrooms, showers and kitchens. The stone’s ability to remain cool to the touch even in direct sunlight makes travertine pavers a perfect option for outdoor applications. Unlike other paving materials, travertine doesn’t become too hot to walk on without shoes.
Last, but not least, travertine pavers are quite resilient and will not show signs of wear and tear from moderate use. Their colors also won’t fade and they will retain their luster even after several years. What’s more, travertine doesn’t show efflorescence – a white discoloration that can often be seen in concrete and similar surfaces – and will remain a beautiful and functional surface for many years.