Finish Options for your Granite Counters

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Granite has been the number one natural stone choice among homeowners and builders for years. It’s beauty and durability are just some of the reasons for its popularity. When you think about granite counters, you likely envision a shiny, smooth stone. The polished look has been the most popular countertop finish choice for years, and is still the most utilized today. As homeowners have started looking for more unique options, changing up the appearance of granite with different finishing techniques has become more fashionable.


Polished granite countertops are probably what you think of when you think of granite. To achieve this look the stone is buffed to the highest possible level. The glossy, highly-reflective surface draws attention to the stone and perfectly displays the flecks, veining, and other desirable characteristics that make each slab one of a kind. A polished finish can also work as a stain repellant, making it a great option for a kitchen prep/work space.

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If you love the look of granite but aren’t a fan of the super shiny style, a honed finish might be exactly what you’re looking for. A honed finish is still extremely smooth, but has a decidedly more matte appearance. Natural imperfections may be more noticeable with this finish, and it is definitely more susceptible to watermarks and fingerprints than the traditional polished look.

farmhousePhoto: Houzz
An example of honed versus polished finishes on the same slab for comparison sake.
honedPhoto: Goodfellas Granite


Similar to the honed finish, leathered stone isn’t glossy or reflective. But this is where the similarities stop. Unlike polished and honed countertops, the leathering process results in a surface riddled with fissures and has a pitted feel, like a fine piece of leather. For this reason, leathering may not be the best option for a busy cook’s kitchen, as it can be slightly more difficult to truly deep clean. Because every stone is unique, the leathering will appear more pronounced on some slabs than others.

leathered-granite-countertops-granite-leathered-granite-countertops-picturesPhoto: Homehad
A close-up of a leathered granite countertop.ideas-leathered-finish-black-granite-dupont-square-edge-design-ideas-for-kitchen-countertop-plus-leathered-granite-exciting-leathered-granite-for-kitchen-countertops-matte-granite.jpgPhoto: Elerwanda


A flamed finish is created by firing an intense heat at the granite, causing the stone to burst and change color. The process results in a rougher, textured finish with a faded, more natural seeming appearance. Flamed granite works best in damper areas, where slip-resistance is an important factor. Because of how well-suited this finish is in exterior, uncovered areas, flamed granite is extremely popular for outdoor kitchens.  Don’t feel confined by this if you really love this look,  it can be used functionally in almost any room in your home.

flamed-granite-countertops-2-flamed-black-granite-countertops-666-x-408.jpgPhoto: Sick Chick Chic
A close-up of a flamed granite Pinterest

Prestige Marble & Granite is happy to answer any questions you may have about different counter finishes, and what will work best for your personal style and needs. We are here to help you with a vast selection of unique, exotic and rare natural stones from around the world. Our knowledgeable staff will guide you through selection, layout, design and installation. We welcome homeowners, designers, and contractors to browse our showroom any time!




Prepping for Your New Countertops!

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You’ve picked out your new countertops and are already envisioning your dream kitchen come to life. You’ve met with the contractors and your installation is scheduled. What now? While certain aspects of install prep fall on the installation crew, there are some things you can do to ensure your counter install goes as smoothly as possible before they even arrive.

Is Everything Where You Want It?

Once your space has been measured and a template cut, changes can be extremely costly and will obviously take additional time to correct for. Make sure your appliances, outlets, and sink are all where you want them to be in the space when your contractor comes to initially take measurements. If you’re purchasing a sink from a separate source, make sure you have that available as well.

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Is the Rest of Your Home Ready?

This isn’t an issue in new builds, but if you are replacing existing counters you want to make sure they are completely free of stuff when installers come to take measurements. And for the day of the install, make sure there is a clear path from where your granite will come in to home and where it’s going. This doesn’t just mean furniture. Rugs, wall hangings, etc. should all be removed. In a renovation, it’s also important to make sure the openings from the kitchen are properly sealed off from the rest of the home to keep dust and debris in.

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Have You Scheduled Other Necessary Professionals?

The majority of installers don’t have licensed plumbers or electricians as part of their crew. So while they will install your sink, they will not be able to actually hook up the plumbing. As such, you will need to coordinate schedules with the professionals who can perform these jobs. It may require extra organization on your part, but in the end will be totally worth it when you’re not having to wait to use your beautiful new kitchen!

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Prestige Marble & Granite is here to help you with a vast selection of unique, exotic and rare natural stones from around the world. Our knowledgeable staff will guide you through selection, layout, design and installation, and can answer any further questions you may have about the information shared here. We welcome homeowners, designers, and contractors to browse our showroom, or give us a call, any time!


Countertop Types: What Will Work Best For You

kitchen.jpgPhoto: Prestige Marble & Granite

Marble? Granite? Quartz? Natural stone or engineered? What does it all mean? Anyone who has built a home or done a kitchen remodel knows the number of different material options can be overwhelming. And it’s an important decision. Experts estimate you should plan on spending 10 to 15 percent of your kitchen budget on your countertops. Here are some thoughts on different types of materials so you can choose what’s right for you and your home. All prices mentioned are general estimates.


Granite is the number one countertop material for a reason. It’s beauty and durability make it a wonderful choice for almost any kitchen. It’s very nature makes it resistant to water and heat. That being said it is slightly porous. Most granites don’t need to be sealed, though it never hurts and will help block stains and liquids from eventually seeping into the stone. Granite’s inherent strength will also help protect it from scratches and etching. Because granite is a natural material there will be variation from slab to slab. While many people love the uniqueness this ensures, it can make matching up slabs difficult.

Expect to spend between $40 and $200 per foot installed.

Granite comes in a variety of natural stone colors and can be finished multiple ways.15-gorgeous-granite-countertops-title-e1503856458744.jpgPhoto: Home Epiphany


The demand for marble has certainly increased in the past few years. While a lot of marbles have gray veining running throughout, if you’re looking for a bright, more pure white slab, marble is definitely for you. It gives a high end, classic feeling to any space. Marble is more porous than granite and does require sealing; this means it does stain more easily than granite and some other natural stones. It’s also a softer stone, meaning it more readily scratches and nicks. While some marbles like Calacatta and Carrara are decidedly more expensive, there are plenty of options with a price point comparable to granite.

Expect to spend between $50 and $200 per foot installed.

The gray veining warms up this marble slab , which lends a polished feeling to this rustic kitchen.Advantages Of Marble CountertopsPhoto: Improvenet


Quartz countertops are growing in popularity thanks to their many good qualities, and due to the fact they don’t have many of the weaknesses of natural stone. Quartz is a manufactured product and is also referred to as engineered stone. The manufacturing process for Quartz allows for an almost unlimited range of colors and can be finished in a luxurious way other solid surface materials aren’t. Quartz is just as durable as stone but more forgiving, so it won’t chip or scratch easily. It’s also nonporous, so it resists staining and will not harbor bacteria or viruses. Quartz doesn’t have many downsides, though it isn’t as heat resistant as natural stone.  It may be considered on the more expensive side, though it’s pricing is competitive with many natural stones.

Expect to spend between $50 and $200 per foot installed.

If you’re wanting a nontraditional countertop color, quartz might be just what your looking for.
quartzPhoto: HouseTrends


Soapstone is a natural material that has been used as countertops for literally hundreds of years. Today people love soapstone for its warm, rustic charm. Soapstone ranges from light to dark gray; the darkest slabs are almost black. Soapstone actually contains a certain amount of talc, which accounts for its milky look and somewhat powdery feel. This also accounts for the softness of the stone, but doesn’t mean it can’t stand up to daily kitchen use. Soapstone is nonporous so it is stain and acid resistant, though it does darken over time. It is recommended you treat soapstone with mineral oil to help achieve a more even look and deepen the color. It’s softness does make it slightly vulnerable to scratching, the mineral oil will help disguise these. Soapstone is extremely heat and bacteria resistant, making it a wonderful choice for any kitchen.

Expect to spend between $75 and $150 per square foot installed.

Soapstone is perfect for warming up what would otherwise be an all white kitchen. It also creates a sense of depth and additional dimension in this large space.decorpad.jpgPhoto: DecorPad


Limestone is a beautiful choice, but not always practical for a busy kitchen. Limestone is an extremely versatile stone, available in a variety of colors and textures. Only the harder, denser varieties should be installed in the kitchen. Your fabricator should be able to help you choose the appropriate slab for your needs, should you choose limestone. Limestone is a calcium-based rock and by its very nature reacts with acidic substances in a manner that can create etching. It’s extremely porous and should be sealed regularly to help minimize staining, as it will soak up liquids quickly. Due to its softness, limestone also scratches and chips more easily than other natural stones. You also need to protect your limestone countertops from heat as it does have the ability to burn.

Expect to spend $50 to $100 per square foot installed.

Limestone looks great in almost any setting, though it requires a lot of maintenance. Many homeowners who want limestone choose to use it in a bathroom as opposed to the kitchen.
f89819d6fbab1e723c2ae503f35ae8af.jpgPhoto: Traditional Home

Whatever countertop material you ultimately choose,  Prestige Marble & Granite is here to help you with a vast selection of unique, exotic and rare natural stones from around the world. Our knowledgeable staff will guide you through selection, layout, design and installation. We welcome homeowners, designers, and contractors to browse our showroom any time!


Tips for Choosing the Right Fabricator

fAll photos Prestige M & G

Countertop choice is a huge part of any home design or renovation process. Homeowners spend a lot of time deciding exactly which slab makes the perfect statement for their space.  Equally, if not even more important than choosing the right slab, is choosing the right fabricator. How is this possible?

The right fabricator will be able to help you choose the right material and slab for your needs. They will be able to explain proper maintenance to insure your counters stay beautiful. While this seems like an obvious part of the job, many fabricators simply don’t take the time or have the knowledge. Founded by Aaron Cook, Prestige Marble & Granite has over 15 years experience in fabricating the highest quality natural stone countertops, earning the company a fabulous reputation as the premier marble and granite business in the region.


There are several different things to consider when choosing your fabricator, some more obvious than others. Here are some important questions to ask to ensure you are completely happy with your final choice, and ultimately your countertops!

What kind of Certifications does the fabricator have?

An established and professional fabricator will be certified. It’s as simple as that. Fabrication and installation certification programs establish industry-wide standards for training and provide measurable proof of knowledge about both the process and products. Prestige Marble & Granite is a member of the Marble Institute of America, which is an instrumental force in setting the standards of quality for stone fabrication and installation. Prestige is also a member of the Home Builder’s Association of Middle Tennessee and the Stone Fabricators Alliance.


What options do they offer?

Countertops today are made from a wide range of different materials. Are you looking for something that will need to stand up to daily use or are you more interested in creating a specific look? An ideal fabricator will be able to help you choose the best option for your usage, budget, and aesthetic desire.  They will be experienced with multiple materials and offers a wide array of choices: granite, marble, quartz, etc. Also, it’s important to be aware of the fact that no two pieces of stone are exactly the same. For that reason its important to find out if you will be able to choose your actual slab, or have to make your decision based on a small sample.

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What kind of equipment do they use? And do they have in-house installation teams?

Top professional fabricators throughout the U.S. use the latest in digital stone cutting technology. This is important when simple mistakes can be costly, cause delays, and negatively affect the final look of your beautiful counters. At Prestige we use state-of-the-art CNC stone cutting machines, routers, and digital templating for quality fabrication and on-time delivery. With digital templating, we can account for the undulation of your wall and ensure the counters match up perfectly.  From your vision to computerized CAD drawing to installation of your countertop, your project will receive state-of-the-art craftsmanship and the attention to detail it deserves. We also never use subcontractors and invite you to come see how we operate anytime!

This is our CNC saw, the GMM Intra. The Intra allows us to either program on the floor or import a CAD drawing. The Intra can cut parallel, perpendicular and diagonal arcs and circumferences. This machine allows Prestige to cut a wide range of materials quickly and with absolute precision.
The Luna 740S is an automatic edge polisher which has been specifically designed to produce straight, slanted , bullnose, and a variety of other edges. This machine is capable of profiling  granite, marble, and engineered stones quickly and efficiently.
The fact that we at Prestige are completely involved in the entire process, from design to fabrication to installation, helps ensure your counter tops turn out exactly as you imagine.


Do they provide references? Can you see examples of their finished projects?

A reputable fabricator will be able to provide references of recent projects. If you can visit one of their job sites and/or showroom, that’s also highly recommended. This allows you to ensure the quality of their finished work meets your standards. This requires a bit of extra research and work on your part, but will absolutely help provide peace of mind about such a big investment into your home.

Do they provide a warranty on their work?

When making any kind of large purchase it’s nice to know the company you are working with will stand behind their work. At Prestige we offer a lifetime warranty on all stone and sinks. We are passionate about making your installation a success and are dedicated to the level of customer service required to ensure your happiness for the lifetime of your counters. Prestige’s commitment to customer satisfaction has earned us an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau.



Whatever project you can dream up,  Prestige Marble & Granite is here to help you with a vast selection of unique, exotic and rare natural stones from around the world. Our knowledgeable staff will guide you through selection, layout, design, fabrication, and installation. We welcome homeowners, designers, and contractors to browse our showroom and bring their ideas and questions with them anytime!


Why is Italian Marble So Desirable?

Michelangelo’s philosophy of artistic creation motivated him to use the best marble in the world for his sculptures. He believed that quarries in Carrara, Italy—located in the northwest corner of Tuscany—fit that description.

Though marble is quarried in many countries, it is closely identified with Italy, where marble formations are spread throughout the land. Italy has many of the finest marbles in the world, having stood the test of time in some of the most famous places in the world. For centuries, Italian marble been transformed into stunning works of art by the world’s most-famous artists, architects and designers, and the demand for Italian marble is high around the globe.  Marble stones can be found in different geographical areas and in different countries, so what makes Italian marble so special?

Italian marble has earned its reputation primarily because the quarries in Italy have access to some of the best raw material in the world. Italian quarries also have  the highest standards for quality control – everything from selecting and cutting the blocks to packaging and shipping is done with precision. Italian know-how in stone processing and production of new manufacturing technologies, as well as in innovation and design, is the added value that makes Italian marble competitive all over the world today.

The most desirable Italian marble varieties are Carrara, Calacatta and Statuario. To the untrained eye, these stones may all look like the same type of white marble. To confuse matters even more, Calacatta is quarried in Carrara, Italy. Here is nutshell description of the three types of marble:


Carrara marble is grayish-white and the veining is smaller and finer. Although Cararra can have have some large and dramatic veining like Calacatta, it will also has many fine feathery lines.

Steveston Townhouse
                                          Carrara marble – Photo by The Spotted Frog Designs 

Calacatta Marble

Calacatta marble is a rarer than Carrara and is more white than gray. Large, dramatic veining is a trademark of Calacatta and the patterns tend to be bigger and bolder than Carrara.  While Calacatta is defined by the whiteness of its background, it can have brown and gold undertones.

Calacatta Gold
Calacatta Gold – by Prestige Marble & Granite

Statuario Marble

Statuario (or Statuary) is the most precious marble variety found in Italy. It contains the subtle gray hues found in Carrara with similar gray veining that you’ll find in Calacatta slabs. This stone is a very bright white in color, also making it the white marble par excellence and incredibly valuable. While Statuario is haled in Italy for being the perfect marble for carving statues, it is also a highly sought after material for residential and commercial projects.

Claremont Park
Statuario marble – Photo by Melissa Miranda Interior Design


Here at Prestige Marble and Granite, we only select the best marble slabs – the rarest, the most unusual – the one in a thousand. The slabs with the most gorgeous veining and most pleasing patterns are the ones you’ll find in our designer showroom. You can count on us to have the finest stones available for a look that’s unique and characteristic of your personal style. 

What is a Vein-Cut Stone Slab?


Sequoia vein cut granite

There’s nothing like vein-cut stone to give a soothing, zen-like ambience to an interior. Flowing, linear striations give a sense of effortless, ongoing flow, like the currents in a river or the undulations of the ocean waves. The look is very popular and used with many design styles, but what exactly is a “vein cut” slab?

Vein-Cutting Explained

Stones that will eventually become your countertops are originally cut from the quarry in the form of a massive block. Veins of minerals run through the block of stone. These mineral veins (each of a unique color and texture) run through the block of stone and will give the future countertops their pattern and character. The character is inherent in the stone itself, but the pattern is determined by what direction the stone block is sliced.

In the vein-cut process, the block of stone is cut along the grain, which will show the layers of sediments and horizontal veining. In contrast to vein-cutting, isthe cross-cut process, in which the slabs are cut across the grain. This is also referred to as a “fleuri” cut because it reveals a flowery, more circular vein pattern, instead of the striped pattern of the vein-cut stone.

Whether you’re going for a traditional, classical look or a sleek, contemporary design, there’s just no substitute for the beautiful banded look of vein-cut natural stone!

When it comes to your countertops, Prestige Marble & Granite is here to help you with a vast selection of unique, exotic and rare natural stones from around the world. Our knowledgeable staff will guide you through selection, layout, design and installation. We welcome homeowners, designers, and contractors to browse our showroom any time!


Prestige Marble & Granite Looks at Kitchen Design Details: Countertop Edges

The renowned architect and designer Charles Eames once said, “The details are not the details. They make the design.” This couldn’t be more true than when designing a kitchen. It’s the details that make a kitchen unique. Each little choice you make integrates to create the finished design. If you have endured a major remodel, you know the small choices can be agonizing – selecting an edge profile for your countertops can be one of these difficult choices.

While the machinery and tools available in modern fabrication shops allow for many unique edge designs, here’s a quick look at some of the options available in each of three major categories, straight edges, curved edges, and fancy edges.

Straight Edge Profiles

Straight edges are great in any style kitchen and are especially appropriate for clean-lined and simple designs. All straight edges are actually slightly eased or rounded in order to reduce the sharpness of your countertop and to help protect the stone from damage. The amount of rounding you choose can significantly change the look. The top edge can be very rounded and the bottom squared as in the Radius edge. Or it can just barely have the edge softened.

Countertop edge profiles: straight

Note the extra thick straight edge countertop on the island below. It is likely a standard 2cm or 3cm with a mitered frame around the sides, making the slab look much thicker.

Traditional Kitchen
Traditional kitchen with straight edge countertops

Curved Edge Profiles

Curved edges can be plain or they can get quite fancy.  They soften the feel of the room and work just as well in just about any design style. Curves are easy to clean and are also safer option options if you worry about little heads getting bumped!

Curved countertop edge profiles


Rounded countertop edge
This rounded edge detail is a timeless classic, great for traditional kitchens.

Fancy Edge Profiles


Use a fancy edge if you really want to make a statement with your countertops. Because fancy edges are so attention grabbing, they are usually reserved for islands that are designed to be a focal point. Fancy edges are beautiful but remember less is sometimes  more – fancy edges can become overwhelming if overused.

Fancy edge profiles for stone countertops

Fancy edge countertop
The double ogee on the curved island makes for a beautiful focal point!
These are just some of the many kinds of countertop edges out there! Come visit our indoor showroom and speak with our staff to learn about the different edge profiles available.They can also help you make the right choice for your design and for your lifestyle!