What Is Travertine Flooring: A Natural Stone Guide

What Is Travertine Flooring?

Travertine flooring is a versatile option that comes in different finishes such as polished, honed, brushed, and tumbled.

Polished travertine has a high shine, honed travertine has a matte finish, brushed travertine has a rustic look, and tumbled travertine has a worn, natural appearance.

Tumbled travertine should be sealed before and after grouting.

It is created by rubbing stone pieces together in a barrel with abrasive grit and water.

Key Points:

  • Travertine flooring is available in various finishes including polished, honed, brushed, and tumbled.
  • Polished travertine has a shiny appearance, honed travertine has a matte finish, brushed travertine has a rustic look, and tumbled travertine has a worn, natural appearance.
  • Tumbled travertine should be sealed both before and after grouting.
  • Tumbled travertine is made by rubbing stone pieces together in a barrel with abrasive grit and water.
  • Travertine flooring is a versatile option for different aesthetic preferences.
  • Different finishes of travertine flooring provide unique visual effects.

Did You Know?

1. Travertine flooring is a type of sedimentary rock that forms from the accumulation of mineral deposits in natural hot springs.

2. The word “travertine” is derived from the Latin word “tiburtinus,” which means “of Tibur” – a reference to the ancient city of Tibur (modern-day Tivoli) near Rome, known for its extensive use of travertine for construction.

3. Ancient Romans extensively used travertine in the construction of monumental structures, such as the Colosseum, the Roman Forum, and the Basilica of Maxentius. This is why travertine is often associated with classical Roman architecture.

4. One of the most famous examples of travertine flooring is found in the Getty Center’s Museum in Los Angeles, where over 300,000 square feet of travertine was used for the floors, walls, and exterior walkways.

5. Travertine flooring is highly durable and can last for centuries. It has even been found in archaeological sites dating back to ancient times, highlighting its longevity and resilience.

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The Versatility Of Travertine Flooring

Travertine flooring is a highly versatile option that adds a touch of elegance and sophistication to any space. This natural stone has been utilized for centuries in various architectural applications, such as floors, walls, countertops, and more. Its popularity can be attributed to its adaptability to different finishes, making it suitable for both traditional and modern settings.

Travertine Finishes

Travertine flooring offers a variety of finishes, providing different looks and feels for your space. Whether you desire a high shine or a natural, rustic appearance, there is a travertine finish to suit your aesthetic preference.

  • High Shine: For those seeking a polished and elegant look, a high shine finish is the ideal choice. This finish enhances the natural beauty of the travertine, creating a luxurious and glamorous atmosphere.

  • Natural, Rustic: If you prefer a more earthy and organic ambiance, a natural, rustic finish is perfect for you. This finish showcases the unique variations and textures of the travertine, giving your space a warm and inviting feel.

Travertine flooring is a versatile option that can be used in various settings, including bathrooms, kitchens, and living areas. Its durability and timeless appeal make it a popular choice among homeowners and designers.

“Travertine flooring offers a range of finishes to cater to different preferences, providing both high shine and natural, rustic looks. Its versatility makes it suitable for various spaces, and its durability ensures long-lasting beauty.”

  • High shine finish
  • Natural, rustic finish

Different Finishes Of Travertine Flooring

Travertine flooring is available in several finishes, including polished, honed, brushed, and tumbled. Each finish has its unique characteristics, making it essential to understand the differences before making a decision.

Polished Travertine Flooring: A High Shine Option

Polished travertine flooring is known for its glossy, reflective surface that adds sophistication to any space. Through the polishing process, which involves grinding the stone using fine abrasive materials, a high shine is achieved. This finish not only enhances the natural beauty of travertine but also provides a smooth, luxurious feel underfoot. Moreover, the high shine of polished travertine reflects light, creating an illusion of more space in smaller areas.

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Honed Travertine Flooring: A Smooth, Matte Finish

In contrast to polished travertine, honed travertine has a smooth, matte finish. This finish is achieved by grinding the stone through a process that creates a flat, even surface. Honed travertine is highly favored for its understated elegance and versatility. Its non-reflective surface creates a more muted and natural look, making it suitable for both modern and traditional designs.

Tumbled Travertine Flooring: A Natural, Worn Look With Softened Edges

Tumbled travertine flooring provides a charming and weathered appearance that adds character and warmth to any space. This rustic finish is achieved by tumbling stone pieces in a barrel with abrasive grit and water, resulting in softened edges and a worn, natural look. Tumbled travertine is popular for creating a cozy and inviting ambiance both indoors and outdoors.

It’s important to note that tumbled travertine requires additional care during installation. To protect its porous surfaces from staining and moisture damage, it is recommended to seal tumbled travertine before and after grouting.

Overall, travertine flooring is a highly versatile option that can be customized with different finishes to match individual preferences and design styles. Whether you prefer a high shine, a smooth matte finish, or a natural rustic look, travertine can effortlessly transform any space into a visually stunning masterpiece.


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Frequently Asked Questions

Is travertine a good flooring?

Travertine is an excellent choice for flooring due to its exceptional durability and versatility. This stone is widely utilized for both flooring and backsplashes, offering a range of styles and textures to suit different preferences. Brushed travertine, in particular, adds a rustic touch with its non-reflective, matte finish, making it a favorable option for those seeking a charming and natural aesthetic. Whether you are looking for a durable and long-lasting flooring solution or a unique and visually appealing design, travertine is a great investment for a variety of spaces.

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Is travertine flooring expensive?

Travertine flooring can vary in cost depending on the quality and grade chosen. Basic commercial grade travertine floor tile typically costs between $2 to $4 per square foot, while many homeowners prefer a higher quality standard option ranging from $5 to $15 per square foot. For those seeking the utmost in luxury, premium travertine tile can be found in the range of $20 to $30 per square foot.

What is travertine used for?

Travertine, a versatile stone known for its durability and natural beauty, finds numerous applications in both indoor and outdoor settings. Its unique characteristics make it ideal for a wide range of uses in modern architecture. Commonly employed for façades, wall cladding, and flooring, travertine adds an elegant touch to any building exterior. Its applications extend to interior projects as well, including showers, kitchens, and decorative walls and ceilings. Moreover, its versatility extends to outdoor spaces, where it finds utility in driveways, pool decks, patio areas, walkways, and facades, enhancing the aesthetic appeal while withstanding various weather conditions.

What are the advantages of travertine?

Travertine offers a plethora of advantages due to its unique properties. Firstly, its hardness rating, comparable to marble, ensures its durability and longevity, making it a wise choice for various applications. Unlike other stones, travertine excels in handling extreme temperature changes, allowing it to thrive both indoors and outdoors without the risk of cracking or damage. Moreover, when properly cared for, travertine tiles can maintain their exceptional longevity, making it a worthwhile investment for those seeking lasting beauty and functionality.

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