Anything Stone are our fabricators for all of our stone worktops including Granite, Quartz, Dekton and Marble. They operate out of Swindon with a sister company in Edinburgh which makes them perfectly positioned to cover the whole of England with us. They are very good at training so that we at Chalon can help our clients to make the best decisions for their kitchen. Part of this training was to send our Design Consultant Emily to Spain for three days to see the quarries for herself.
She was hosted by Cosentino, the company behind the huge brands of Silestone and Dekton. Their factory is based right in the mountains near Almeria, southern Spain. This used to be a popular place for quarries, however, since the recession it is ghostly quiet.
Cosentino’s original product was Silestone; quartz from the surrounding mountains crushed up with resin, pigment and antibacterial to make a granite-like slab but with improved qualities. Although Silestone is 98% natural material, because it has been re-formed, it means that when you look at a sample, your final worktop will look very similar unlike a granite where anything could happen! It is a less porous material than granite which makes it more stain resistant. Whereas a granite would be stained by a glass of red wine in 1-2 hours, with Silestone, you have 3-4 hours to wipe up the mark.
Dekton has only been in production for 3 years but already has a huge market presence. They take a mixture of natural materials from the mountains ground into a fine powder. This is then mixed, formed into slabs and compressed under huge pressure. High energy lasers bond the particles together in a process called sintering to create a slab with a similar chemical structure to granite. Due to the sintering, the structure is uniform throughout with no weak spots which is the key to making it scratch and heat proof – one of the few materials that you can safely put a pan directly on straight from the hob. Their workshops are designed to the highest standard and are almost fully run by robots. Whereas the Silestone workshops are full of noise, water and people, the Dekton factory at the other end of the site is over 1km long, with only 4 members of staff, and they were all having lunch elsewhere! The slabs are stored in dark warehouses with robots fetching the order and offloading to robotic controlled pallet trucks that place the order inside the waiting lorries. In the next few weeks, Dekton is launching their new polished and more natural effect slabs which are definitely worth a look.