Over the last few years, directors of Cevisama, the International Ceramic Tile and Bathroom Equipment exhibition, have been working hard to try and attract more visitors and exhibitors to the show. This year, they decided to extend the show one day to allow industry professionals additional time for networking and business opportunities. Held from February 9 to 13, 2015, at the Feria Valencia Centre in Valencia, Spain, the 2015 edition marked the first time the show has ever been held for an entire week, opposed to its normal four-day run, which turned out to be an overall success.

For the second consecutive year, the exhibition was tagged Nos vemos en Valencia (“See you in Valencia”), and held in conjunction with two other trade fairs relative to home design — Feria Hábitat Valencia and Maderalia Selection — quickly becoming one of the largest international venues for interior design and architecture. The show’s director, Carmen Alvarez, believes that coinciding Cevisama with Feria Hábitat Valencia and Maderalia Selection has not only helped attract a “record number of professional buyers,” but also attendees. “It has especially helped to increase [the number of] architects and interior designers,” he said.

This year’s show — packed with new features and innovations — showcased some of the hottest trends in ceramic tile, furniture, lighting, bathroom/kitchen tools and textiles, and featured approximately 90 Spanish Ceramic Tile Manufacturers’ Association (ASCER) manufacturers, which displayed their latest products to more than 75,000 visitors from more than 140 countries.

View the Cevisama 2015 Product Gallery in the slideshow above

While walking through numerous booths, it was apparent that several manufacturers are staying on top of popular trends, including the ever-growing stone- and wood-look tiles, which still remain a favorite among consumers and are continuously expanding with different details, patterns and textures. The stone-look, which was replicated in almost every natural stone you could think of, was relayed in several new collections, including Grespania’s glazed porcelain tile collection, “Calacata;” Roca Tile’s porcelain stoneware collection, “Legend,” inspired by a British limestone; Fanal’s “Velvet” porcelain tile collection, with highly veined, gray stone patterns; Metropol’s (part of the Keraben Group) “Covent” porcelain tile collection, inspired by rustic stones; and Saloni Cerámica’s “Atlas” porcelain series, which embraces the look of a classic Statuario marble.

The wood-effect trend also returned this year, with new textures and patterns, more realistic-looking panels and more veined and highly-veined options for consumers to choose from. Some new collections with this look included Aparici’s “Sylan S-7” porcelain and ceramic tile collection,” inspired by a Scandinavian design — one of the most innovative wood looks at this year’s show, which incorporated a unique texture; Vives’ “World Woods” porcelain collection, which incorporates a burnt-wood effect with a textured finish, as well as distressed and non-distressed looks; Tau’s “Alpha” porcelain tile collection, which incorporates colors as well as texture; and Grespania’s “Patagonia” porcelain tile collection, which is available in 10 and 20 mm thicknesses and has a special clause where it can be installed outdoors atop grass, gravel or sand without the use of grout (it can also be installed indoors, per usual instructions).

A newer look that seemed to flood the floors of Cevisama this year was the cement and brushed concrete look, which was present in various collections, such as Ceracasa Ceramica’s “Porto” porcelain tile collection; Keraben’s “Future” and “Priorat” porcelain tile collections, which both embrace industrialized looks; Fanal’s “Habitat Tabica” series, which has a more worn look; and Vives’ “Rift” porcelain tile collection, which embraces different shades of gray — a color that was also very popular in many of the new lines and collections. Pure white and black were two other colors that companies seemed to veer towards as well.

In addition to the exhibits Cevisama offers, each year the show also features an exhibition of ceramics for architecture known as “Trans/Hitos,” which showcases the innovative use of ceramics in the center of the Feria Valencia Centre. This year’s theme was “Synergies,” which didn’t highlight any one project in particular, but rather four separate novel projects completed by different organizations and schools of architecture, which showcase the investigation of new ceramic systems and applications for architecture. The projects were completed by the Barcelona Ceramic Tile Studies Department, Harvard University and the Open Habitat Platform — and all organized by ASCER.

Also incorporated in the Trans/Hitos exhibition was a spherical dome that housed photos of the prize-winning projects from the Architecture, Interior Design, Degree Projects and Special Mention categories from the 13th annual Tile of Spain Awards, which was also organized by ASCER. Two projects were selected by a panel of field-experienced judges — a small restored urban family home in Lisbon, Portugal, and a restored cloister at Bextí Castle in Castellón, Spain — and each awarded a cash prize. The “House in Principe Real,” a five-floor family home located in Lisbon’s historic quarter completed by Vasco Correia and Patricia Sousa of CAMARIM Arquitectos Studio, won first prize in the Architecture category. The “Restoration of the Cloister at Bextí Castle,” a restoration finishing the unfinished elements in the Castle’s courtyard using handcrafted terracotta tiles completed El Fabricante de Espheras studio, won first prize in the Interior Design category.

The Awards also included a category to acknowledge the best “Final Degree Project” undertaken by students at architecture schools where the use of ceramic tile plays a major role. This year’s winner was “Alfamo 2.0,” which was completed by María González Aranguren, a student at the Madrid School of Architecture (ETSAM). The judges were impressed by this project to restore Lisbon’s Alfama district, making particular mention of the high standard of the proposal, both in terms of urban planning and architecture. They also admired the optimistic construction interpretation of Lisbon’s traditional ceramic tile facades.

Exports

Cevisama also makes sure to educate its visitors about important statistics involving the Spanish ceramic tile sector, including imports, exports and domestic and foreign sales — as well as where they believe the industry is headed. Although exports rose by almost 8% in 2013, reports showed a decrease in foreign sales for 2014, which are expected to increase by only 3.6%; domestic sales are even lower, which are only expected to increase by 3.2%.

Europe still remains the largest market for Spanish ceramic tile exports, receiving 47% of the total exports in 2014. However, exports to the U.S. continue to grow, rising by just over 11% and accounting for 4.4% of the total sales — making the U.S. one of the top 10 countries that Spain exports to the most (sixth to be exact).

“During the next few years, we will go through some of the most difficult times, in terms of exports,” said ASCER Chairman, Isidro Zarzoso. “So we’re hoping 2015 will be optimistic.”

The next edition of Cevisama will take place from February 1 to 5, 2016 at the Feria Valencia Centre in Valencia, Spain, and will feature ceramic machinery — as the show does every two years. For more information, visit feriavalencia.com.