New material for countertops cannot be scratched or burned
BY TRACEY ARIAL

Blowtorching, scratching, banging, spraying cold water, painting and placing a pot of boiling water on a beautiful black countertop. It may sound destructive but a hand easily wipes the surface clean, leaving it as good as new. In fact, the video that demonstrates this unlikely feat is reminiscent of a magic trick.

The countertop surface in question is a new product: Dekton by Cosentino. And video demonstrators are not trying to fool anyone. The product really is as durable as it appears in those videos; in fact, it’s guaranteed to last for 25 years. “I knew what the product was before we got it, so it didn’t surprise me,” says Hubert Dubois, sales director at Wilsam, the Quebec and Atlantic Canada distributor of Dekton. “It’s coming from a company that was first in the quartz business. They’re proving again that they’re ahead of everybody else.”

Dubois says that Dekton can be used for countertops, floors, shower walls or outdoors – on counters, patios or walls. “It’s a skinny, matte look, so it has the European style of countertops,” he says. “It is available in three thicknesses: 0.8 centimetres, 1.2 centimetres and two centimetres, depending of the applications (countertop, walls, floor or shower walls). With its matte finish, colours and infinite applications, this product is adapted to market design trends.”

Dekton was released in Europe a year ago and has been in Canada since May. Designers are starting to learn about it, but Dubois says he expects demand to grow exponentially once people start realizing how versatile it can be. “Indoors, it is a much better product than the others because it is more scratch-resistant,” he says. “It’s unstainable. You can clean it with pretty much anything. There is no other material that can be used outside without any problems.”

Ten colours are currently available – three blacks (wood finish, flat finish and matte finish), two white (wood finish, matte finish), two imitation concrete (spotted, plain), beige and two copper (oxidized and dark brown).

So far, the best sellers have been the concrete with black spots, the beige, and the matte-white, but Dubois says that five more colours and styles will arrive in Canada by early November.  They include two imitation marbles (Carrara and Calacatta) and three natural colours.

Dubois got to know the product first-hand during the Circuit Index-Design last September. He was among those conducting live demonstrations of its resistance to screwdrivers, boiling water and blowtorch damage at Galerie MX in Montreal. “Everyone who saw our demonstration filmed it with their cameras so they could show their clients,” he says. “We were using a torch directly on the surface, but there was no change in the colour, no change on the finish, no cracks. We sprayed cold water on it, and nothing happened. We were using a regular screwdriver on the surface without leaving any marks. Even if we weren’t a Costentino distributor, we would want this product. There’s nothing on the market that has those characteristics.”

Dubois says that the material arrives in flat 56-by-120-inch sizes, but authorized dealers can cut it smaller. There are now 13 dealers in Quebec and one in Atlantic Canada who have purchased the specialized tooling needed to work with the material, which is composed of quartz, glass and porcelain. They all had to be trained to work safely with the material, which is very dense.

Large projects of 5,000 square feet or more can get customized sizes, which take roughly six weeks to be transported to Canada from Spain.