I had the good fortune this month to be invited as a guest on the Cambria Experience Tour to see firsthand the inspiration, the people and the process that goes into the manufacture of Cambria quartz countertops. This family-owned, American- made company produces quartz slabs that are composed of 93% pure, natural quartz, one of the hardest minerals on earth, pigments and bonding material. Nonporous, scratch resistant and never requiring sealing or polishing, Cambria quartz has gorgeous depth of color, movement and sparkle in each design and is without rival in the industry. With more than 120 designs in eight Collections, there is a design to suit every style and situation.
My whirlwind experience began with a short flight to Minneapolis where our first stop was a visit to the stunning Cambria Gallery on 7th. Located in the heart of the city, the venue showcases trend-setting kitchen and bath vignettes, sleek fireplaces and other stunning applications as well as elegantly displayed full slabs of all of the Cambria designs. Open to the public and available for private functions, the Gallery is a destination for designers and clients alike and is a must-see if you find yourself in Minneapolis.
The next day began, oddly enough, with a tour of the New Sweden Dairy in neighboring Nicollet. The importance of which became clear upon learning that the family owning Cambria are third generation dairy farmers and this is where their story begins. One of three dairies and a calf ranch, New Sweden is a large-scale dairy operation whose living philosophy is “Good All Around”. Striving to achieve the perfect balance between the needs of more than 20,000 cows, the business, the community and the environment, it is a spotless, state-of-art operation that everyone should have the chance to see. Trust that watching 72 cows being milked in eight minutes, or one full revolution on a rotary milking parlor (think merry-go-round) is a fascinating sight!
Our next stop was the Cambria Production Facility and we began our tour at the dock where the raw materials are received. Only the purest quartz of the highest quality is used, anything less is rejected. In fact, at every stage of production, inspections and tests are performed multiple times to ensure only the finest outcome. The combination of cutting edge technology and the human touch at every stage of production blend to create the most beautiful and significantly superior quartz slabs in the industry. Important environmental practices are in place as well. 100% of the water used in production is recycled, metal tooling is retooled and only scrap that is ten square feet or less is sold for use in roadbeds. The high and exacting standards that exist at every single phase of production are quite impressive and reinforce my view that for the money, this product offers a far superior value than anything else on the market.
The final stop was the Cambria FabShop where slabs are fabricated into not only countertops with simple or intricate edge profiles, but custom designs with inlays, water-jet cutouts, flooring, wall cladding, fixture fascia, etc. as well. If you can dream it up, it can no doubt be fabricated.
Our hosts, Cambria and Blasius, Inc. (our Michigan fabricator) were accommodating and such great fun to be with. Their extensive knowledge and willingness to share their passion made my Cambria Experience Tour so much more than worthwhile. I can’t wait to share my new perspective on my next Cambria project!
To learn more about Cambria go to www.cambriausa.com