High near the Apuan Alps in Tuscany, a bold, young, 22-year-old artisan on horseback traversed the hazardous mountain terrain looking for the perfect artistic medium. He would stay there for months at a time, not only procuring this natural stone, but also working alongside excavators, carvers, and even building the roads to transport these magnificent, one-of-a-kind slabs. Once he carefully hand-selected each piece, they would be roughed out, prepared for transport, and destined to become some of the most well-known and greatest artworks in the history of mankind.
The year was 1497. The artist’s name was Michelangelo Buonarroti. The ideal medium he was searching for? Carrara marble.
Carrara, Tuscany — The Marble Mecca
Michelangelo revisited Carrara throughout his life due to the superior quality of marble compared to other locations, such as Florence and Rome. Not only did he sculpt the Pietà (housed in St. Peter’s Basilica, Vatican City) from Carrara marble, but another of his most famous pieces, David, was also sculpted from the natural Tuscan stone.
In fact, Michelangelo had such an affinity for Carrara marble that he returned to the region a second time in 1503 to create statues of the apostles; he visited again in 1505 for the funerary monument of Pope Julius II. Soon, Carrara became the most preferred stone in the Renaissance era. Michelangelo also continued to visit the town of Carrara due to its vast resources of marble.
Romancing the Stone
What is it about Carrara marble that makes it so special? Michaelangelo had such a fondness, admiration, and preference for this natural stone that it’s easy to see why the Renaissance artist was both captivated and enamored by it.
From its utterly unique color and veining to the singular shine and timeless beauty this stone offers, Carrara marble offers a wide variety of exceptional characteristics. In fact, some of the same things that make Carrara marble so treasured by Michaelangelo and other great sculptors are the very same reasons that many people choose it for their kitchen and bathroom countertop designs.
Here are a few of the top reasons to consider a Carrara marble countertop installation for your kitchen countertop, bathroom countertop, or other space.
Color and Shine
Consisting of an abundance of calcium carbonate, White Carrara — one of the most popular types of Carrara marble — features a vibrant white background with deep, smoky gray veining. You’ll find that Carrara marble can also have a light gray or blue background with pronounced gray or ivory veins. Certain slabs also have a low refractive index, which lends a special shine and luminosity to the stone, allowing it to brighten up and add elegance to any room it inhabits.
There are numerous Carrara marble color combinations, vein thicknesses, and stone radiance to choose from, depending on your unique style.
Another reason to consider a Carrara marble countertop is that it is less expensive compared to other options. While engineered stone options, like quartz, are becoming trendy with homeowners and commercial builders right now, their complicated installation process can ultimately up drive the final cost. Carrara marble is an authentic natural stone that is very affordable for the high-end appearance it offers. Different types of Carrara marble are available at different price points, depending on the supplier, the rarity of the stone, the installation, the finish, and other factors.
One of the main benefits of a Carrara marble countertop is its timeless appeal. The classic beauty of this natural stone makes it a popular option in nearly all homes, as no two marble slabs are alike. It’s been a favorite amongst artists, architects, and decorators for hundreds of years, and it will retain its allure for hundreds more.
Perfect for a Wide Range of Styles
Installing a Carrara marble countertop is an excellent choice for a wide range of home styles, from classic to modern and everything in between. Its white and gray hues blend flawlessly into any interior design, allowing the stone to harmonize with surrounding decor and furnishing.
Protect Your Artistic Investment
Aside from its versatility, Carrara marble is also known for its quality, as it will last for many years with proper maintenance. Use only marble-safe products to clean your countertops and keep them shiny and bright. We also recommend selecting a honed finish to prevent etching.
Think about it — Michaelengo’s Carrara marble sculptures have withstood the test of time, and with a little TLC, your countertop can, too!
Is Marble Not Right for You? Try Carrara-Inspired Quartz Designs!
There’s no denying that Carrara marble countertops are highly sought after due to their timeless beauty and elegance. However, we understand that marble isn’t for everyone; thankfully, there are plenty of other options available that can evoke the feel and look of natural stone. Quartz — one of the most popular and fastest-trending stones — is available in an array of gorgeous, Carrara-inspired colors and designs. Come visit one of our showrooms or slab yards and see for yourself!
Choose Quality Carrara Marble With Colonial Marble & Granite
Colonial Marble & Granite specializes in bathroom and kitchen remodeling services while also offering countertop installations. Give our team a phone call today to learn more about the many benefits of using Carrara marble in your home!