Coverings' Best in Show Award winner Inalco.

Outstanding booth design and product displays were recognized during the annual Coverings Best in Show Awards with Inalco garnering the grand prize.

Also earning recognition were Atlas Concorde, Etruria Design, Firenza Tecnoarte (a Lamosa company), Laminam, Levantina, and Mackenzie.

Inalco constructed an elegant, sophisticated, restrained and modern booth featuring totally tiled and inspirational interior environments: bedroom, lounge, foyer, hall, library/living room.

Atlas Concorde put the mod in modern with a bold new white booth framed by wood veneer walls and plexi panels and entered via ramp. Its minimal aesthetic featured a central circular conference/lounge pit defined by a white string curtain and two tiled walls; a freeform ceiling opened overhead. A living room vignette at the booth’s entry showed the product in situ. Two storage walls contained wings for product display.

Etruria Design reveled in its open tower of bevel power. Four tile-faced stanchions at the booth’s corners framed a compact central display area. Every aspect of the design was conceived to telegraph the beveled edge design of the company’s tiles. The lighting was theatrical in intent and effect: spot lights overhead illuminated specific products; side lighting cast shadows accenting the product’s dimensionality. Lighting repeatedly changed color in the booth’s interior, underscoring its impact on perception.

Firenza Tecnoarte (a Lamosa company) used the architecture as both showplace and reference. Designed by Diego Hernandez of Local + 10 Arquitectura, the open pavilion contained three tall, black, torqued enveloping display walls that invited the curious to look and touch. The curves of Mexico’s giant conch shells and the monumentality of Mayan pyramids inspired the spiral formations.

In its Coverings debut, Laminam made quite a splash. The company produces ceramic lamina in various thicknesses, the thinnest being 3 mm. The black and white interior incorporated these ceramic surfaces as countertops, diffusers for the lighting, flooring, and as part of the framing walls. Product displays and signage enlivened the booth’s interior walls.

Levantina made the most of classic Euclidian geometry. Designed by Trazos y Pendencias, the pavilion was carpeted in the company’s flooring products; Techlan, the company’s new porcelain floor tile, paved roughly 30 percent of the booth. Display walls divided the space into three, and all contained graphics and corporate signage in black and white. Two suspended units formed a partial ceiling, with the rest of the pavilion open on all sides.

Mackenzie Childs was all about layering pattern atop pattern, with a lot of color. For the company’s Coverings debut, creative director Rebecca Proctor and her team of seasoned designers and visual display professionals created a traditional-with-a-twist millwork background to set off each distinctive decorative motif. Framing elements with traditional woodworked details like paneling and bead board created a creamy backdrop for the Mackenzie Childs statement of color and pattern.

Matt Vann (standing), winner of 2008 Harley Davidson FLSTF Fat Boy motorcycle sponsored by the National Tile Contractors Association (NTCA), and Bart Bettiga (seated) executive director of the NTCA.

Florida retailer wins Harley

First-time Coverings attendee Matt Vann was the winning entry in the drawing for the 2008 Harley Davidson FLSTF Fat Boy motorcycle sponsored by the National Tile Contractors Association (NTCA) and The NTCA is also a Coverings sponsor, and the Harley giveaway, which this year was valued at $18,000, has become something of a traditional topper to the four days of exhibits and seminar programming for the international tile and stone expo.

“I was shocked when I heard I had won the motorcycle,” said Vann. “I really thought someone was playing a joke on me. The funny thing is, I don’t even know how to ride one. Now that I have such a cool model, I want to take lessons as soon as possible.”

According to Coverings show management, the motorcycle drawing attracted several thousand entries.