The new Tile of Spain booth design highlighted various Spanish tile manufacturers that were present at the show, displaying a variety of ceramic tile in gallery cases along one side of the booth.

Editors learn about the newest tile products from Tau Ceramica during the Tile of Spain booth tour.

Chicago’s McCormick’s Place Convention Center opened its doors to more than 35,000 international and domestic exhibitors and visitors for Coverings, the premier international trade show and conference dedicated exclusively to showcasing the newest in ceramic tile and natural stone. More than 55 ceramic tile manufacturers from Spain debuted their latest series and collections at Coverings 2007, held from April 17-20. As the voice of the industry, ASCER (the ceramic tile manufacturers’ association of Spain) promotes ceramic tiles through the collective brand “Tile of Spain”. In true support of all attending Spanish manufacturers, the hospitality booth for Tile of Spain’s brand manufacturers was redesigned, with the new booth design premiering at Coverings 2007.

The new Tile of Spain booth design highlighted various Spanish tile manufacturers that were present at the show, displaying a myriad of ceramic tile in gallery cases along one side of the booth comprising a Boutique Gallery. Guests were encouraged to wander through the booth as if were a Spanish ceramic exhibit in a museum. The new gallery-esque booth design made it easier for visitors to admire the many different ways in which ceramic tile can be interpreted.

The tile trends of 2007 were well represented in the showcases, from fabric inspired toile- patterned tile, to brocade embossed-looking tile from such Spanish tile mainstays as Venus and Inalco. Nature inspired tile that could double for wood, stone, or brushed metal is a trend well represented, showcasing tile from Tau, Inalco, Roca and Asuvi. Decorativa, a smaller Spanish concern, showed eye-catching colorful tiles that make up a few different Asian-influenced series. Tile of Spain’s goal was for visitors to get a snapshot of and experience first hand the shapes, colors and textures of the latest ceramic innovations from Tile of Spain branded manufacturers.

Another feature of the pavilion was open shelving that acted as a library displaying other related Tile of Spain products as well as literature, brochures, catalogs, and books. The new art-deco shelving made it extremely accessibly for interested visitors.

In fact, every element of the new space was designed with the guests in mind. Part of the re-design included a larger hospitality space for hosting morning cafés, lunchtime paella, and afternoon tapas. All visitors were encouraged to sit and enjoy refreshments while watching engaging promotional audiovisual presentations on the large screens. The presentations ran consistently throughout the show, visually captivating each visitor.

Patti Fasan, Tile of Spain Consultant, was on hand each day to present 2-3 different trend programs designed for the Seminar Theatre section of the booth. Her vibrant, innovative ideas and trend explanations were an essential part of the Tile of Spain Coverings offerings for those who wanted to learn more about the creative and technological advancements of the Spanish Tile manufacturers. Her seminar themes included: “Trends: The Face of Ceramic Tile in 2007,” “The Diverse Role of Ceramic Tile in Architecture,” and “Passion.”

As part of the five-day event, a VIP group of editors with hand-chosen architect guests were escorted by NTP and the triad of Tile of Spain, Tile of Italy, and Tile of North America to each booth. The tour kicked off with an ASCER press conference at 2:30pm on Thursday, where ASCER representatives discussed the state of the industry. At 3:30 pm the editor group was guided on a tour of several manufacturer booths, including: Tau, Inalco, Asuvi, Decorativa, Venus and Roca. The tour culminated in a return to the Tile of Spain booth where the editors and their architect guests indulged on delicious tapas and Spanish wine.

All work and no play is certainly not the Tile of Spain way! Tile of Spain ended Coverings 2007 with a bang by co-hosting Appreciation Night for all exhibitors, editors and general attendees at the House of Blues. In true Blues Brothers style, the Afrodisiacs (a band commissioned by Tile of Spain) sang a unique rendition of “Soul Man” entitled “Tile Man” written by Tile of Spain just for the event. The band played to enthusiastic partygoers, all wearing fedoras and wayfarer glasses (outfitted with red Tile of Spain croakies). To say the night was a hit is certainly an understatement. Over 500 guests enjoyed the evening’s festivities.

Tile of Spain has participated in Coverings since 1988, and looks forward to next year’s 20- year anniversary. For more information please visit