Tatler How-To: A Guide To Kitchen Surfaces
Here's a quick guide to help make sense of the myriad options available.
Quartz surfaces are engineered stone comprising crushed quartz and other minerals that are combined with resin. This results in rock-like worktops more durable than natural stone, thus creating a non-porous, heat and bacteria-resistant worktop that doesn’t require protective sealing. Look to brands such as Caesarstone, which produce such surfaces with up to 93 per cent quartz in patterns that mimic marble, concrete and semi-precious stones.
Caesarstone,10 Bukit Batok Crescent #08-06, The Spire,Tel: 6316 1938
Composed of a higher percentage of resin than quartz, solid surfaces are more malleable than quartz worktops. Its pliability allows the stain-resistant surface to be easily integrated seamlessly with materials like wood and stainless steel. “Because of their acrylic content, solid surfaces are more pliable, which allows for curved counters,” says Ann Lee, general manager of furniture retailer P5; the store carries Italian kitchen brand Dada, which uses solid surfaces from Corian.
Corian is available at Dupont Singapore, 21 Biopolis Road #06-21 Nucleos, South Tower, Tel: 6586 3688; P5 is located at 63 Mohamed Sultan Road #01-14 Sultan Link, Tel: 6337 0050
Natural stones such as granite and marble are highly durable, with a robust look. However, these are porous, which can lead to water marks on your countertop over time. If you love the rugged look of natural stone, consider Sensa by Cosentino— this collection of natural granite surfaces has been treated with an invisible coat that protects against liquid penetration, stains, as well as colour damage that may be caused by sunlight and UV radiation.
Cosentino, 34/35 Duxton Road, Tel: 6713 9543
Laminates are a versatile paper-based composite that is easy to clean, while offering good resistance to scratches. It’s also available in myriad textures to suit any interior style—these include wood-grain verneers, matte-effect lacquers, as well as high gloss finishes. Laminate brand Formica has introduced Protec+, a new collection which harnesses the antimicrobial properties of silver to prevent the growth of bacteria on these surfaces.
Formica, 502 Sims Ave, Tel: 6514 1312
Extremely durable, and highly heat and water-resistant, stainless steel is the go-to for professional chefs; and it adds a sleek accent to any kitchen. While the metal alloy is easy to clean, it is more prone to scratching and dents. Opt for a brushed finish to conceal such imperfections , and pair it with steel, wood or laminate cabinetry from SieMatic—its “AntiPrint” coating reduces the appearance of fingerprints on matte surfaces.
Available at W. Atelier, 201 Henderson Road #01-01, Tel: 6270 8828
A technologically advanced material that is revolutionising kitchen design, Fenix NTM (nanotech material) has a matte finish and a smooth feel. This durable and aesthetically attractive surface material is low-maintenance, has antifingerprint properties, and is highly resistant to abrasions. The material has a surprising thermal healing feature that allows micro-scratches on the surface to be healed an infinite number of times.
Fenix Ntm Edl, 43 Sungei Kadut Street 1 EDL Building, Tel: 6664 8010
Like stainless steel, one of the biggest advantages of ceramic is that it allows you to cut and prepare food directly on your countertop if you so choose. Resistant to scratches, stains, heat, mould and chemical products, ceramic also holds up well against humidity, which makes it ideal for outdoor kitchens. Italian ceramic brand Laminam offers counters in sophisticated textures that are inspired by stone, wood and plaster.
Available at CitiCeramica Systems, 22 Sin Ming Lane, #06-74 Midview City