Choosing between marble or granite kitchen countertops is ultimately a personal choice. There are both pros and cons to both materials. Regardless of your choice, both of these natural stone surfaces can provide years of beauty and functionality in your kitchen.
Here are six things that you need to consider when choosing a kitchen countertops…
Gleaming white marble has been prized by architects and artists for centuries. Ancient Greeks chose it to build their grandest temple, the Parthenon to honor the goddess Athena. Michelangelo used marble to create his masterpiece, the statue of David. Marble is also available in a wide array of colors other than white. Its consistent composition and unique light refraction, two characteristics that make it the material of choice for sculptors, make it a popular kitchen countertop material as well.
Granite comes in a vast array of colors. It is preferred by many for its natural stone appearance including granules of different colors and veins of contrasting impurities. The combination of colors that can be found in one piece of granite and the natural imperfections of the stone make each granite countertop one of a kind. Building your kitchen’s color palette around a striking polished granite countertop will create a beautiful and natural looking decor.
Honed marble has a softer look, velvety feel and does not show scratches as easily. Light is able to penetrate a few millimeters into the crystalline surface before being refracted, giving it that soft appearance that sculptors prefer. Polished marble is shinier and more reflective. While polishing marble makes it more stain resistant it shows scratches more easily.
Granite is typically polished and sealed for use in kitchen countertops. Granite provides a shiny, extremely strong surface that is mostly impervious to spills and staining provided it has been properly sealed and maintained.
Marble is very long lasting, sturdy and has a relatively high resistance to chipping. Some statues dating from classical Greek times have survived almost 2000 years in nearly perfect condition. Marble is relatively easy to carve so is likewise easy to scratch. Its resistance to deterioration from acid rain has made it a popular material for monument construction.
4. Stain Resistance
Marble is susceptible to staining from acidic foods and liquids. Marble is prone to staining from many common kitchen substances including wine, juice, vinegar, mustard and tomato. Harsh cleaners can also be absorbed and permanently discolor the stone. Various sealants are available to make marble more resistant to staining.
Granite is also susceptible to staining, particularly lighter colored granite. It is recommended that you reseal your granite countertop twice a year to resist staining.
5. Cost and Availability
The cost of both materials varies from $40 to $250 or more per square foot depending on the quality, color, finish and origin. The leading producers of marble are Italy, China, India and Spain. Granite is produced in many countries but the largest exporters are China, India, several African countries, Brazil and Scandinavia. Specific colors may be limited to very small areas and may not always be readily available.
6. Other Considerations
Marble has an association with classic Greek and Roman architecture and sculpture. It is considered a symbol of luxury and good taste. Marble can also be easily carved and for those wishing to include intricate detailing or incorporate complex custom shaped countertops it is an excellent choice.
Granite has been the overwhelming choice for kitchen countertops over the last several years. Its popularity has made it a signature feature of modern kitchen design, but just as harvest gold and avocado colored appliances were once ubiquitous in American kitchens, granite’s current popularity does not guarantee its future appeal.
Both marble and granite are heavy. They may require additional structural support which can add to the cost of your kitchen.
Five Star Stone Inc is one of the well know countertop installers in Clearwater Florida, focusing on providing a quality product to every single customer.