As some of you may know, Betsy and I went to Italy and Spain to visit our daughters studying abroad last year. This year I was invited to go back to Spain by Rockin’teriors and Cosentino Surfaces. I am on the plane home as I write this post. I traveled with Omar Salazar, who is a former employee of mine, and currently Operations manager of Rockin’terirors, and brother of owner Laura Grandlienard. Omar and I went a couple days early to get used to the time change, and explored Madrid, prior to the rest of the group joining us for a more formal tour guided by Alvaro Gonzalez, who is a Madrid native, and Regional Director of the South East US for Cosentino. We got in about 10 miles of walking around the city and ended the evening, with a visit to the Madrid Cosentino City Center. Their showroom is quite impressive and was a great place to learn more about their products, as well as how to cook Paella, and we even took in some Flamenco dance lessons. Believe me, I won’t be quitting my day job to start dancing….
Next, we flew from Madrid to Granada to tour the city and La Alahambra. I had no idea that was one of the most popular historical tourist destinations in the world. We got a history lesson about how the complex transitioned from a Muslim to a Christian stronghold in southern Spain. A trivia tidbit for you – “Granada” is Spanish for “Pomegranate”, which are grown in the area, along with olives, almonds, lemons and oranges.
After the tours, we rode a bus for a few hours south to Vera, Spain to spend the night prior to the “main event”, which was visiting Cosentino headquarters, factory and marble quarry. We learned how they got started, and how they are leading the industry in the world of surfaces. I have a greater appreciation for what it takes to produce slabs, tiles, sinks and shower pans of superior quality and innovation. We will be featuring many of these items in our new showroom.
I was most impressed with the multiple uses and applications of Dekton, an Ultra Compact surface. Dekton is different from Silestone, a quartz product, by not having any resins in it, which solves issues such as fading due to UV exposure, heat resistance, and strength. This allows Dekton to be used as exterior cladding, flooring in large formats or tiles, and outdoor kitchens, which, you know, is near and dear to my heart.
Overall, the trip was very informative and I would like to thank Laura & Omar from Rockin’teriors and the Raleigh Cosentino team, Jonathan & Bebhinn, for allowing me to travel to Spain and learn more about their products and their industry. I believe many of our customers will benefit from my having this experience and knowledge to make their projects, and their homes better.
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