(ALEXANDRIA, VA — MAY 20, 2016) The growth and energy at the 2016 Coverings show strengthened the show’s position as the leading international tile and stone exhibition in North America. More than 25,000 industry professionals attended the week-long expo, April 18-21, 2016. This figure is an increase in overall attendance from the 2015 show, and to industry insiders, affirms positive movement in the tile and stone market.

The 25,000-attendance count is a remarkable 15-percent increase from 2009, the last year Coverings was held in Chicago. This year’s most impressive attendance segment is held by distributors, which increased by a noteworthy 18-percent since 2009.

“The uptick in overall attendance from last year signals continued vitality and vigor in the tile and stone industry,” said Alena Capra, Coverings’ Industry Ambassador. “There was an onsite energy that emanated from the show floor, and it is encouraging to have that excitement verified with these recap figures.”

Veteran Coverings exhibitors noted the excitement on the show floor as well as the ample opportunities for networking and education that took place during the show.

“This year we had great feedback from key customers that came to the show. It’s important for us to have these quality interactions with attendees,” said Sarah Eamigh, director of U.S. marketing for StonePeak Ceramics. “The feedback from the architecture and design crowd is always exciting; there was a great turnout from that segment due to the show’s location in Chicago this year.”

There was also plenty of buzz from the Ceramics of Italy pavilion, which impressed attendees with a new central booth design in addition to the bevy of tile products from manufacturers.

“The atmosphere at Coverings 2016 was fantastic – we saw an exciting turnout in attendees here in Chicago,” said Dave Bouchard, representative of Emil America. “Chicago is a great town for the show, drawing in the architecture and design crowd, as well as retailers and distributors. We feel confident with the sales relationships generated by being at the show.”

Natucer, a long-time Spanish exhibitor, found the show to be an imperative part of the company’s global business for sales and relationship building.

“We have been at Coverings since 1998 and have always found tremendous value in the show. The North American market is always one of our top priorities after the domestic market in Spain,” said Victor Gasque Balaguer, area manager for Natucer Ceramica.  “All of the programming and networking opportunities at the show are important in growing our relationships and increasing awareness of our products.”

There was no shortage of opportunities for attendees to build on their technical skills or to network with others, as Coverings offered an extensive conference program with more than 75 sessions and CEU courses.

Coverings 2017 will be held April 4-7 in Orlando, Florida.

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About Coverings

Coverings is the largest and most important ceramic tile and natural stone trade fair and expo in the United States. It features exhibitors from more than 40 countries and is the stage for introducing some of the most innovative tile and stone products in the world.

The exposition serves as a valuable resource for continuing education for all segments of the industry, with more than 75 informative, accredited seminars and live demonstration sessions throughout the show, all free of charge. Coverings attracts thousands of distributors, retailers, fabricators, contractors, specifiers, architectural and design professionals, builders and real estate developers, as well as journalists and bloggers who cover this vital and dynamic industry.

Sponsors of the show are The Ceramic Tile Distributor Association (CTDA), Tile of Spain/Spanish Ceramic Tile Manufacturer’s Association  (ASCER), Ceramics of Italy/Confindustria Ceramica, National Tile Contractors Association (NTCA) and the Tile Council of North America (TCNA). The show is managed by National Trade Productions.

Coverings 2017 takes place April 4-7 at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Fla. For more information, visit or contact National Trade Productions, Coverings Show Management, 703-706-8257.

Florida Tile To Assume North American Management Of Two Key International Brands For Sister Company

LEXINGTON KY — Italy-based Panariagroup, a world leader in tile and stone products, has transferred management of North American sales of two of flagship brands to its US subsidiary Florida Tile.

The announcement, effective immediately, was made by Paolo Mussini, Founder and Managing Director of Panariagroup’s Cotto d’Este, during Coverings 2016, the international tile and stone conference and expo held in Chicago in late April.

During his outline of the plan to Cotto d’Este and Florida Tile distributors, Mussini said, “In order to continue to increase the value of the Cotto d’Este and Kerlite® brands in North America, the business needs to be supported differently, with local inventory, people and promotions.  Starting from May 1, 2016, the sales and distribution of these two brands will become the responsibility of our sister company, Florida Tile.” (Florida Tile is headquartered in Lexington, KY.)  

Cotto d’Este is known worldwide as having established a new and unique luxury porcelain tile segment in 1993 and yet another segment in 2004 when the company introduced Kerlite®, an innovative, light yet durable, large-panel sized tile for floors, walls, counters, tabletops and contemporary furniture.

Says Mussini, “In order to seize new opportunities and to compete at the highest level, I needed to make changes in the way we were distributing our product. Today, customers need more than just a superior product. They need a closer inventory, more present and specialized marketing support and skilled sales and technical support they can rely on.”

“This is why we made the decision to partner with our sister company, Florida Tile in America, and rely on their expertise and success to develop an action plan here for Cotto d’Este and Kerlite®,” Mussini adds.

Mussini stresses that Cotto d’Este and Kerlite® will not become part of the Florida Tile catalogue. “We are creating a separate distribution network and seeking the best partners regardless of whether or not it is a Florida Tile branch outlet or distributor,” he says.

“This way, we can retain and support our existing network of Cotto d’Este distributors and leverage the work done to get us to the point we are today, as well look for the best partners for our brand.” Mussini says.

Visit for more information or call 1 (844) 4-COTTOUSA [844-426-8868]


 Cotto d’Este and Florida Tile are fully owned subsidiaries of Panariagroup, a publicly owned company traded on the Milan Stock Exchange (MILAN: PAN IM). Panariagroup is a leading manufacturer and distributor in over 60 countries around the world with six manufacturing sites in Italy, Portugal and the USA and eight brands positioned in the high-end of the market. 




Crossville Sponsors First-Ever Southern Style Now Showhouse, presented by Traditional Home Magazine

Crossville, Tenn. / New Orleans, LA – Officials with Crossville, Inc. have announced the company is the exclusive tile sponsor for the first-ever Southern Style Now Showhouse, presented by Traditional Home Magazine. The 15-room house, a Queen Anne Victorian built in 1896 and located on St. Charles Avenue in New Orleans’ Uptown District, has received an extensive renovation led by some of the nation’s top interior designers.


The remodeled home debuted during a gala event on May 18, 2016, benefiting New Orleans’ Preservation Resource Center, and then open for public tours May 19 – June 12. The showhouse is occurring in tandem with the first Southern Style Now Design Festival that runs May 19 – 22 as a celebration of the unique and distinct aesthetic and culture of our nation’s southern states.


In addition to providing tile for the showhouse, Crossville is supporting the festival by leading two unique events.

“The Fifth Wall” Panel Discussion
Lindsey Waldrep, VP of Marketing for Crossville, will moderate a panel discussion on “The Fifth Wall” featuri

ng several notable Southern designers sharing insights on “the secret to stylish slab, mosaic how-to’s, and more.” This event takes place on Saturday, May 21 from 9 to 10:15 a.m. at the Ogden Museum of Southern Art in New Orleans.

CEU Presentation: Thin Tile

Crossville’s Doug Ingham will lead a Lunch & Lecture CEU event focusing on the burgeoning porcelain tile panel, aka “thin tile,” category. The event takes place on Friday, May 20 from noon to 2 p.m. at Stafford Tile & Stone, 5234 Magazine St. in New Orleans.

“We’re excited to be part of this first-ever showhouse and festival,” explains Waldrep. “It’s great to see our tile collections so beautifully used by a line-up of phenomenal interior designers. Even more importantly, it’s an honor to be part of an event that will make great strides in the ongoing renaissance of New Orleans’ design community. The festival is bringing in the best of the best, and we’re thrilled to be in the mix.”

For tickets to tour the showhouse, visit For details and ticket purchases for the Southern Style Now Festival, visit the event website by clicking here.

Gigantic Contest-Winning Backlit Mural by Bostik and Artaic Unveiled at MGM Grand, Las Vegas

The unveiling of the gigantic, robot-produced, mosaic mural at MGM Grand’s Las Vegas “Wet Republic” day club during HD Expo turned out to be one of the most successful and certainly, grandiose marketing exercises ever to be experienced within the architectural and design (A&D) community.



For more than six months, partner companies Bostik ( and Artaic Innovative Mosaic ( had been deftly planning the event, which included trumpeting it via a focused advertising, public-relations and social-media program to a very precise demographic.

“We wanted to get the most enthusiastic mosaic design people, both those who work professionally with these materials… and also, those who are simply mosaic aficionados, to enter the competition,” stated Scott Banda, director of Marketing & Business Development for Bostik. “So together with Artaic and our ad/public relations agency, Communicators International, Inc., we communicated at optimal levels internally before we launched our communications program externally. This strategy ultimately proved to work out very well!”



Contestants were asked to create designs to be produced using glass mosaic tiles, robotically assembled using Artaic’s patented Tessera™ robotics and Bostik’s state-of-the-art, translucent Dimension™ Rapidcure™ glass-filled grout. “The only creative parameter was that the design had to embody the theme, “Essence of Las Vegas,” stated Dr. Ted Acworth, Founder & CEO of Artaic. “We wanted contestants to let their imaginations run wild.”

Run wild, indeed. Hundreds of talented designers submitted some of the most creative designs ever conceived. These ultimately were presented to a handpicked panel of judges consisting of well-known architects, designers, trade magazine press and tile industry professionals. The plan was for the top ten finalists to be selected, and the winning mural design to be produced and then installed on an outside wall of the MGM Grand, Las Vegas  — unveiled right at HD Expo’s legendary “Party By The Pool” celebration in front of thousands of hospitality design professionals.



Dr. Ted Acworth, along with Scott Banda, co-emceed the unveiling ceremony, which included introducing all the finalists. At sunset, the winning design was finally displayed, and backlit to further exhibit all of its amazing artistic and unique visual characteristics. The winning designer, Nicole “Nikki” Kohri, was there in person to receive her grand prize: a round-trip vacation for two to Paris.

Acworth commented, “We work with some of the most advanced architectural design professionals across the globe, and clearly, Nikki is one budding star!” Joyen Vakil, senior Vice-President of Design & Construction for MGM Resorts International added, “Ms. Kohri’s design creation fits in perfectly with the overall design theme of our Wet Republic. It’s visually engaging, fun, and very innovative!”

Elated and humbled, Nicole Kohri stated, “I cannot express how grateful I am for this opportunity. I cannot stop smiling and am still shocked to have won. It was so magical watching everyone look up at the mural and touch the tiles with a big smile.”



Ms. Kohri intends to take her sister, Rachelle, along with her on the grand prizewinner’s Paris sojourn. “My family is so proud; we really had a wonderful time at the Party by the Pool Celebration. The Bostik and Artaic teams are amazing, and made us feel so welcomed and appreciated. Hearing all those compliments just melts my heart… and, motivates me to pursue my true passion, which is mosaic design. This wonderful experience has definitely opened a window of opportunity for me, and I will always be grateful!”

Scott Banda added, “As most people in the A&D community now know, together with Artaic, our main goal with the Design ‘N Gather competition is to bring back the ancient, time-tested art of mosaic mural design and celebrate the many talented design professionals that greatly contribute to the aesthetic world around us. But in doing so, if we can discover a bright, young talent such as Nicole Kohri, someone who has the potential to make a difference within the design sector moving forward, it is our honor, pleasure… and, commitment to do so!”

During HD Expo show hours, Bostik had an enormous blimp flying over the city of Las Vegas proper, to reinforce the company’s strong, global branding program. Additionally, at the Party By The Pool, Bostik leased out the VIP section of six bungalows, complete with closed circuit TV showing both Bostik and Artaic focused videos.

The show must go on! Next week (May 19 – 21) Ms. Kohri will join the Bostik team at the AIA show in Philadelphia for further recognition of her achievement. She will be formally recognized at the Party In The Market event which will take place Friday evening, just prior to the introduction of the Bacon Brothers band’s musical set. Bostik will again feature the works of the top ten finalist at its Gallery Lounge inside the exhibit hall.

Banda concluded, “This contest is an industry first, and the enthusiasm for it amongst the design community is amazing. People loved our gallery in Las Vegas and we are excited to show everyone this truly innovative mosaic design gallery again in Philadelphia!”

Satori, a Laminam by Crossville collection, earns IIDA/HD Best of Show – Hard Surface Flooring award

Las Vegas, NV – Laminam by Crossville’s Satori Collection has been named Best of Show – Hard Surface Flooring in the 20th Annual IIDA/HD Products Competition. The announcement of the win was made at the HD Expo in Las Vegas. Crossville, Inc. was an exhibitor at the show.

satori by laminam by crossville - lodge (3)

Products winning Best of Show honors are selected based on a range of criteria such as aesthetic appeal, innovation, value, and sustainable attributes. Satori’s porcelain tile panels come in three colors that offer luxe, varied looks suitable for commercial or residential installations. The line is offered in 1 x 3 M and 1 x 1 M size formats in 5.6mm thickness. This thickness makes the product suitable for flooring installation, but it may also be used on walls.

For additional information on Crossville’s Laminam products, visit

Crossville, Inc. Celebrates 30th Year in Business

Crossville, Tenn. – Domestic porcelain tile manufacturer Crossville, Inc. celebrates its 30th anniversary on May 5th. Founded in 1986, the company is U.S.-owned and operated, with headquarters and manufacturing facilities located in Crossville, Tennessee. As a wholly owned subsidiary of Curran Group, a privately held holding company renowned for its core values of family, respect, partnership, integrity, and improvement, Crossville benefits from exceptional support and infrastructure that has made its 30 years of success possible.

Crossville Plant photo with flagIn addition to being the first tile manufacturer in Tennessee, the company has been the forerunner in many innovations, achieving an impressive list of industry “firsts” in its three decades in business.

first to produce large format tile on site
first to manufacture tile with certified recycled content
first to develop the ability to recycle fired porcelain, resulting in creation of the Tile Take-Back® Program and recycling partnership with TOTO USA
first to achieve certification of its waste recycling programs
first to achieve TCNA’s Green Squared certification for all of its U.S.-produced tile lines
first to distribute a complete line of large format, thin porcelain panels (Laminam by Crossville)
first to become a net consumer of waste

Tim Curran, co-president of the Curran Group and a constant leader for the Crossville organization, reflects on the what has brought the company to such a notable milestone.

Tim Curran, The Curran Group

Tim Curran, The Curran Group

“Simply put, our success is all attributable to the people who do the work at Crossville,” Curran states.

“Whether that is a visionary like Svend Hovmand who first envisioned Crossville and later became its president, a life-time tile maker like John Smith who brought stability to our manufacturing and also later served as the company’s president, or any of the hundreds of wonderful employees who have made our company at home in Crossville, Tennessee, none of our success happens without the contributions of many hard working individuals of the highest character.”

In looking back at the three decades, Curran reflects on key phases in Crossville’s growth, noting the pivotal aspects of each.

The company’s “infancy”
“Crossville successfully recruited an initial team that built the first of its kind tile manufacturing facility in the U.S., organized a very successful sales and marketing team, and introduced a new product category: porcelain tile. All of these were accomplished in a few short years while generating a profit.”

The company’s “youth”
“Crossville emerged from being a novelty in the middle of Tennessee to a recognized leader in the tile industry with a reputation and presence that spread around the world. Capacity and complexity both continued to grow as porcelain tile became a mainstream product category.”

The company’s “young adulthood”
“Porcelain has become a major part of the tile industry. Products have become incredibly sophisticated with sizes and shapes virtually unlimited. The level of competition has increased both from burgeoning production in China and other parts of Asia, as well as an explosion of production facilities in the U.S., in particular Tennessee.

Crossville has branched into distribution and has continued to develop its proprietary logistics programs. This is where we are today—about to hit our stride as an ‘adult’.”

Curran notes, “I think we have demonstrated to the industry that we are good at what we do—making and selling tile—and that we conduct ourselves with the highest morals and a good heart.”

He shares that these standards are the foundation of the company’s aspiration for the future. “There is still a long runway ahead for Crossville,” he summarizes.

To learn more about the company, its products, programs, and sustainable practices, visit

Crossville Announces The Common Thread for the Cure Scarf Design Contest, Names Panel of Interior Designers as Judges

Crossville, Tennessee – Crossville, Inc. has launched its second scarf design contest, a biennial competition held in support of The Common Thread for the Cure, the nonprofit organization that provides practical support for members of the furnishings and interior design industries facing the challenges of breast cancer.

“We’re excited to once again engage our design community in a really unique, creative contest with the ultimate goal of increasing awareness and support of The Common Thread for the Cure,” states Lindsey Waldrep, Crossville’s vice president of marketing. “It’s inspiring to see so many come together to help our colleagues and their families get through the real life challenges of breast cancer diagnoses.”

Members of Crossville’s distribution network and the design community at large have already submitted designs for consideration, and the company is now announcing those who will be part of the contest’s judging panel. The company has enlisted four renowned interior designers from across the country to determine the contest’s winning design.

Screenshot 2016-04-07 11.48.25
Allan Dallatorre – Los Angeles-area interior designer, design consultant to TOTO USA, owner of Hinge Decor of Hollywood
Lisa Mende – Charlotte, NC-based, nationally acclaimed interior designer, allied member of ASID, IDS, Design Trust of NYC, and Withit
Linda Holt – Boston-area interior designer, member of Benjamin Moore Advisory board, contributor to Merrimack Valley Magazine
Kathy Sandler – Nashville, TN-based interior designer and editor-in-chief of design blog

Sandler, Dallatorre, Mende, and Holt will vote on scarf design concepts submitted by a range of entrants from Crossville’s distribution network and the design community at large. The judges’ winning design will be produced and sold to raise funds to go toward The Common Thread for the Cure’s Helping Hand Grants, in time for October/Breast Cancer Awareness month.

Additionally, Crossville will open the contest to popular vote to determine another winner for production of a second scarf. Popular voting will be open April 14th through 30th and may be tracked by following @crossvilleinc on social platforms. Anyone can vote by visiting

Jane Barea, president of The Common Thread for the Cure and an interior designer in Winston-Salem, NC, says “We’re so grateful for Crossville and this scarf competition. It’s a great way to spread the word about Common Thread across the nation. We’re an entirely volunteer-run organization, so programs like this are so important for drawing attention to what we do.”

Visit the Crossville website for additional information about the competition. Winners will be announced in mid-May, and the winning scarf designs will be unveiled in October in tandem with Breast Cancer Awareness month.

Daltile to be featured on new FYI Network original series

fyi_he_shed_she_shed_nopremiere_key_art_horizontal (2)DALLAS, April 5, 2016 – Fueling the outdoor living trend, Daltile is participating in FYI’s new original series “He Shed She Shed,” which premiered on FYI Network on Saturday, April 2 at 10pm ET/PT. Each episode will follow two homeowners, friends or neighbors in the ultimate male vs. female backyard shed showdown as they build and design unique spaces. The show will also feature existing sheds across the country and highlight the inspiration behind transforming their shed.
As people across America are cleverly transforming their outdoor sheds into supplemental living areas, such as backyard pubs, small offices or “shed and breakfasts”, tile is a great option due to its durability in the elements. Daltile will be featured in two episodes this season, and will help inspire participants and viewers to imagine what’s possible.

Daltile is participating in Season 3 of Tiny House Nation on FYI

Daltile is a participant in Tiny House Nation on FYI. (Photo by Molly Winters Photography)

Daltile is a participant in Tiny House Nation on FYI. (Photo by Molly Winters Photography)

Daltile is participating in the upcoming season of FYI’s “Tiny House Nation”, which follows renovations experts John Weisbarth and Zack Griffin as they travel across America to show off ingenious small spaces and the inventive people who live in them. Daltile has partnered with the show since the series premiered in September 2014, and has helped dozens of tiny homeowners imagine what’s possible in their 500 square-foot-or-less spaces.

“Tiny House Nation” was inspired by an increasing number of Americans who are downsizing their homes to either simplify their lives or gain financial independence. Season 3 premiered Saturday, March 26 at 9/8c on FYI.





SAIC students commence tiling on Coverings Student Bench Project

(April 5, 2016) — The tiling portion of the Coverings Student Bench project kicked off last night with the students of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC).
On hand to assist and instruct the students were Guinevere Johnson (SAIC); Jamie Munce (MAPEI); Yvette Levita (Mid-America Tile); Karin Fendrich (National Trade Productions); and Mark and Connie Heinlein (NTCA).
Students met at J&J Motor Freight (directly across from McCormick Place) and saw their projects realized in wedi polystyrene foam boards as fabricated to their specifications by Lewis Miller and crew of Ravenswood Studio.
Mark Heinlein, NTCA trainer (r.), was on hand to instruct the SAIC students involved with the Coverings Student Bench Project.
Following introductions, a safety brief, discussion of the tile and associated projects the students went to work on this stage of the project.
A second session will be held on April 6 at J&J Motor Freight.  The in-process benches will be relocated to McCormick Place where the final two sessions will be held on April 11 and 13.

For more information on the Coverings Student Bench Project or Coverings, visit

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