Laminate flooring was first introduced in Europe and it's no coincidence that some of the major producers reside there. One manufacturer, Abet Laminati, is located in northern Italy, near Milan. Not surprisingly, this location near one of the world's fashion capitals has its influence on flooring too, as Abet Laminati produces a variety of high design, high quality laminate.
Among the wide range of products available, choices include laminates that mimic the look of exotic woods like Olive, Wenge and Zebrawood.
Aged Pine and Oak make up part of the rustic nature of Abet's Vintage product line, offered in oversized planks up to six feet long. The size of these planks adds to the "Old World" style.
The raised textures in the Microline collection bring added dimension and depth to the Douglas Fir, Wenge and Bamboo wood patterns.
The interesting variety of styles is rounded out by the Fiber collection, made from recycled jute coffee bean bags covered in high pressure laminate. The presence of a rogue coffee bean or two that didn't escape the manufacturing process only adds to the unique style that this collection offers.
Abet Laminati doesn't produce laminates just to mimic the look of wood and stone, as laminate flooring is commonly known for. What sets Abet apart from other laminate manufacturers is their innovation in creating styles, colors and textures that are different from the run-of-the-mill laminate floor patterns, and aren't found in other materials.
In their own words, they're not locked into the wood grains and stone textures, although they do have them. Rather, they let the design community's insight into trends involving color, look and texture drive new products within their laminate lineup.
One of the more innovative products is the Parqwood® floor. It actually contains a layer of real wood in the surface layer. It's treated with resin which provides maximum protection but doesn't alter the look or feel of the wood. It's a consideration for areas once thought to be impractical for real wood flooring because of how wood might deteriorate under heavy traffic.
Families with homes that face the rigors of everyday life from pets, tracked-in sand and dirt and young children usually appreciate the durability of an Abet laminate floor. It's resistant to scratching and scuff marks as well as fire, acids and fading. It also has a lifetime residential warranty.
But what probably sets Abet Laminati apart from other makers is that their flooring has traditionally been made for the commercial market. This includes high traffic locations such as hotels, airports, shops and similar settings. If it can stand up to hundreds of footfalls per day in a retail environment, it should fare pretty well in a home environment, even with dogs and kids.
To go one step further, their Parqcolor® Ultra product line has an even greater resistance to abrasion as a result of a special protective coating overlay.
Abet's laminate flooring tongue-and-groove construction is simple yet durable, allowing for easy click-together installation. It can be installed over an existing floor for a full floating-floor application without the need for extensive work.
One of the benefits of laminate flooring is the minimal maintenance it needs. Ammonia or vinegar and water work well as a cleaning solution and window cleaners are good for spot cleaning. On the other hand using soaps or solutions meant to clean vinyl flooring can often leave a waxy film residue that's sometimes difficult to remove.
Abet Laminati flooring may be harder to find at local flooring retailers but it's usally available through professional designers. Abet can also be purchased directly from Abet, Inc. in the US. For samples or more information check out the Abet Laminati website.
Photos and portions of this article courtesy of:
Home Improvement News and Information Center
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