Stone Pocket Guide


Limestone deposits (calcite) that have been dissolved by groundwater. The characteristic holes in travertine are the result of the hot water and gasses escaping during the formation process. Ideal for floors, walls, and splashes. The value of this stone is determined by: 1) the size and number of fill holes (density), 2) rare qualities or limited availability,  3) color consistency from piece to piece, 4) factory honing, polishing and/or  filling processes. Colors are abundant in creams, chocolate brown, golden and red tones. There is an abundance of finishes (honed, brushed, tumbled, polished), edge treatments (squared, tumbled, chiseled, antiqued) and sizes (versailles pattern, rectangles, very large and very small formats). Travertine is not acid resistant.


The same geological makeup as travertine, however, onyx is formed in cool, cavernous conditions, similar to stalactites. Onyx is dense and will take a high polish. This multi-colored, translucent stone is most commonly available with a glossy finish. It is suitable for walls and extremely light duty (bathroom) floors and splashes. Onyx is not acid resistant.


A travertine or limestone that has had heat, pressure and fluid activity applied that results in a change in structure. This metamorphic transformation results in a denser stone with a myriad of colors that can be finished with a high gloss, honed or brushed.  A polished finish is ideal for vertical installations or for horizontal installations where abrasion, stain and acid resistance are not a concern. Marble is not acid resistant.


Stone that was formed by the cooling and crystallization of magma (molten rock).  This extremely dense stone has hundreds of color in primarily earthy tones. Granite can be finished a number of ways including polished, honed, leathered, and flamed.  Granite is acid, stain, and wear resistant. Many granites are also ideal for high traffic (commercial) floors and countertop installations.

Slate, Sandstone & Quartzite

Shale, under heat and pressure, can form into slate. Beach sand can be consolidated to form into sandstone. Sandstone, under heat and pressure, can form into quartzite. Granite is acid resistant. Many of these stones can be used indoors or outdoors in a variety of horizontal and vertical applications.

Gaggenau Shop in Shop

It isn’t often that we have the opportunity of supplying tile to a company that is older than our country, so it’s with great pleasure to announce that we are providing tile for the soon-to-be-open “Gaggenau Shop In Shop” inside the Allstate Appliances Scottsdale showroom.

Gaggenau Appliances, is a German manufacturer of appliances that was founded in 1683.

Fast forward to 2015, when Gaggenau selected floor tile from Villagio for their largest Shop in Shop in the Western Hemisphere, and their only Shop in Shop in Arizona.

Villagio provided Gaggenau with BASIS DARK GREY porcelain tile that has a current contemporary feel and complements the beautiful, innovative appliances manufactured by a company that has been around for more than 300 years.

Here is a sneak peak of the new Gaggenau Shop in Shop.

Look for a grand opening to be announced by Allstate Appliances later this year.

Villagio Tile and Stone Villagio Tile and Stone Villagio Tile and Stone Villagio Tile and Stone

Four Things to Know About Limestone – #4 Finishes & Textures

In our final entry in the four most important things to know about limestone, we look at IMPORTANT THING #4: FINISHES & TEXTURES.

Denser, stronger limestone are ideal for manufacturers to create one-of-a-kind 3D stones. Split-face (where a thicker tile is split in half, using the split face), striated (straight lines cut into the tile), chiseled finishes, 3d basket weave, trims and moldings—the list of possibilities is limited only by the fabricator’s abilities.

In summary, a stone may have the same name, but may not be the same quality. At Villagio, many of our limestones are rated light duty, medium duty and heavy duty for residential areas.

We don’t carry the most porous (consequently most problematic) limestones.

Visit us at our Scottsdale Showroom where we can help pair the stone characteristics with your cost and maintenance expectations.

Four Things to Know About Limestone – #3 Price

Today in our series examining the four most important things about limestone, we look at IMPORTANT THING #3: PRICE.

Virtually all natural stones, from diamonds to gems to stone tiles, are available in multiple grades of quality. Typically, if a stone is rare and desirable, it is more valuable. 

Stone available in abundance with less desirable characteristic, is generally less expensive.  Keep in mind the same quarry (and quite often the same block) will produce multiple qualities of stone. A light limestone may cost $5 or $15 a square foot. The differences will be density, hardness, ease of extrusion from the quarry, cost of manufacture, overall consistency of the stone and the market demand.

In the end, whether it’s a diamond, precious stones or limestone, quality is directly reflected in the price.

For more information on choosing the right limestone visit us at our Scottsdale Showroom.

Stay tuned for our next post on limestone finishes and textures.

Four Things to Know About Limestone – #2 Density & Strength

We are currently looking at the four most important things to know about limestone.


As with all natural stones, limestone has a wide range of density/strength. It is important to pair the durability and cleaning expectations with your application when selecting natural stone.

Some of the very light limestone out of Turkey can be extremely porous and should be sealed BEFORE installation (they can permanently stain during the installation process) and are suitable only on walls and the lightest of traffic areas (like bathrooms).

On the other end of the spectrum, is limestone from the Jura region of Germany, which has been subject to intense heat and pressure over time and can have density and hardness surpassing granite!

For more information on how to design with limestone visit us at our Scottsdale Showroom.

Stay tuned for our next post on limestone pricing.