Last month, Touch kitchen designer Dom Roberts took time out of the office to visit one of Spain’s renowned stone factories. It’s one of a number of international research trips various members of the team take each year to improve their knowledge and get inspired.
(Dom, pictured above centre, with representatives from Cosentino and Mayflower Stone)
What was the purpose of your trip?
To expand my knowledge of Cosentino products – including Silestone, Sensa and Dekton – and to be able to give a better customer experience when dealing with these products.
Where is the factory located?
The factory is located in Spain, about two and a half hours drive from Alicante and close to a small town called Macael. The local towns are very dependant on Cosentino as it provides around 1000 jobs and a lot of business. The roots of Cosentino come from the Cosentino family producing marble products on a very small scale from the local quarries. It has grown and grown over the years to become the worktop giant it is today.
What were the highlights?
The most interesting part for me was seeing exactly how these incredibly hard materials are made, and the processes the raw materials go through to become so aesthetically pleasing whilst maintaining incredible toughness and durability. Each Dekton slab goes through a 180m long oven over the course of 8 hours and up to a heat of 1200° to give it it’s unique properties! It was also fantastic to learn about the roots of the business – marble – which now only makes up 1% of their turnover; but Cosentino keep it going to keep in touch with their history.
How have the experiences from your trip impacted and informed your work at Touch?
When speaking with clients and other designers, I feel I can communicate a much greater understanding of the processes that go into making these products so exceptional. It is great to have seen how the different stones are produced and the scale on which they are made. A trip like this enables me advise on worktops and finishes for our kitchen brand Touch Kitchen. Material choice and offering our customers the very best is incredibly important to us at Touch and a trip like the one I just took helps inspire my every day.