NEW YORK, NY -- From April 9 to 12 at Coverings, the largest international tile and stone exhibition in North America, taking place at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, FL, the Italian Pavilion will showcase a vast array of cutting-edge tile and installation products in more than 75 booths from Ceramics of Italy member companies. The pavilion, organized by Confindustria Ceramica (the Italian Association of Ceramics) with support from the Italian Ministry of Economic Development, will also offer a delicious respite for attendees and more information about the industry in Ceramics of Italy’s central stand (Booth #1225), designed by e+i studio. Coinciding with the 30th anniversary of the show, the Italian Association of Ceramics will also introduce a new two-volume book, Mater Ceramica, which delves into the history of ceramics and Italian tile design over the past 70 years.
In the middle of the Italian Pavilion, attendees will find the Ceramics of Italy booth “Strada Dinamica” situated like an open piazza. Designers at e+i studio modeled the exhibit after a lively Italian streetscape, with standing communal tables, landscaped benches, and a coffee bar and café, all clad in tile from Lea Ceramiche and Florim and set on a raised flooring system by Newfloor to demonstrate the versatility and durability of Italian products. Fila Surface Care Solutions also provided cleaning products for the booth. The space serves as the perfect meeting point for attendees to network over coffee or take a break from the tradeshow floor. It also houses an information kiosk where visitors can learn more about exhibitors in the Italian Pavilion and initiatives the Italian industry is supporting to promote the benefits and use of ceramic and porcelain tiles, grouts and more.
Trends and Innovations
Visitors will find the Italian Pavilion full of inspiration and innovation this year, with a multitude of new products spurred by technological advancements and shifting cultural trends. As Italian companies continue to invest in new production equipment, their product lines are evolving into a whole suite of surfacing tools with a variety of sizes, thicknesses and finishes developed around a single design. At this year’s show, visitors can expect to find tiles ranging from 3- to 30-mm-thick, including a new 12-mm-thick tile specifically designed for kitchen countertops, bathroom vanities, tables and outdoor kitchens. Meanwhile, gauged porcelain tiles continue to grow in popularity, with designs ranging from hyper-realistic natural looks to dark florals and geometric patterns on wallpaper-like panels. Companies are also continuously expanding their systems of porcelain pavers, as tile is a natural fit for outdoor environments with its low water absorption rate and high breakage loads.