A Game-Changing Marble for Kitchen Countertops — Heather Hungeling Design


Azerocare Marble in “Calacatta Top” | Image via Pietra Luxury in Stone


If you have not been slab shopping before, you need to know that stone yards don’t typically sell to you, the consumer.  They sell the slabs that you have selected (which they will hold and side mark for you) directly to your fabricator.  So the final pricing information will come from whomever you have decided to have fabricate and install your countertops.  However, in my experience, you can get a stone yard to give you relative cost per square foot…such as “this one’s going to run you $10 more per square foot than that one.” 

Tina, from Pietra, was kind enough to share with me that the upcharge cost of going with an Azerocare slab over an untreated slab of the same stone, on average, is about 10-15%.  There is some variation to that, as the cost of different stones can vary greatly.  This is a no-brainer, in my opinion. This basically boils down to the argument that you can save a few thousand dollars in the short term by going with a regular material, but then risk feeling like you’ve thrown away $10,000+ a few years later. This is highly hinged on whether you’re the type of person who will be bothered by etch marks. I had regular marble in my kitchen for years, and I accepted that as the “patina of time.” However, if I have the option again in the future, I would rather know that my investment would never be degraded by an unsightly etch ring right in the middle of my island.


Also, as kind of a footnote on the subject of cost, Antolini is a high-end provider of stone.  They quarry and sell highly desirable slabs.  In that industry, some distributors get what amounts to “first dibs” on blocks of stone that are brought out of the earth.  So those “first dibs” or Grade A batches of stone are going to be the most expensive.  After that selection process, it’s opened up to lower grade purchasers.  So, in other words, if you try to compare the cost of using Azerocare slabs of Calacatta Oro to using untreated Calacatta Oro from a distributor of non-Antolini slabs, you might find a bigger price difference.  Antolini’s slabs are going to be Grade A slabs and finding a distributor that sells Antolini exclusively (like Pietra) will guarantee you that you are picking from some of the nicest slabs available. 

There have been some problems reported of over-pricing on Azerocare.  Since your fabricator is the most likely source of your pricing, don’t be afraid to ask them to break out the cost of the material from the price of the fabrication.  You’ll then be in a better position to cross-check the cost through several different quotes and know if you’re being gouged.


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