Get to Know: The Minis Collection

Go to Morocco and you’ll immediately see the most recognizable feature of the country’s architecture: the zellige. A type of ceramic tile work that dates from the 10th century, zellige are laid out in elaborate, often multicolored patterns and adorn countless surfaces.

Here at Granada Tile, our passion for tile has taken us all over the world, including Morocco, and we of course fell in love with zellige! In fact, we liked them so much that zellige inspired one of our newest lines of cement tile—our Minis Collection of concrete tile.

Inspired by Moroccan zellige, the Minis Collection of cement tile is one of Granada Tile’s newest collection of concrete tile. Image, Granada Tile.

Unlike their Moroccan counterparts, though, Granada Tile crafts the Minis Collection of cement. It’s a key and important difference, because concrete makes the tiles stronger and less like to chip, offering superior durability. They’re also a more eco-friendly choice, since the cement tiles are air-cured rather than kiln-fired (no thick, choking smoke from our production process).

Granada Tile offers two patterns and multiple color options to choose from, which means the Minis Collection of concrete tile offers plenty of choices for every project, be they residential or commercial. Try the Star Cross pattern for a traditional zellige look and then tweak it by using unexpected color combinations. For a wave-like effect, the Escama pattern is just the ticket.  Use the Minis Collection of concrete tiles inside and out (except in areas prone to freezing), on floors and walls. With a slightly undulating surface, they bring a dynamic feel to backsplashes, bathroom floors and walls, and fireplaces.

Mix them, match them, you can have tons of fun making your project unique using Granada Tile’s Minis Collection of cement tile!

To order a sample, contact us today! 

Breaking News: The Sincerest Form of Flattery at Anthropologie

Although we live, sleep, eat and breathe cement tile here at Granada Tile, we still manage to get out and about. Of course, even when we’re out our thoughts still turn to concrete tile. Recently, Melanie Stephens, our co-founder, made a trip over to the Grove here in LA and happened to pop into Anthropologie, which recently underwent a major renovation.

Our pattern Fez appears at the redesigned Anthropologie store at the Grove in Los Angeles. Image, Granada Tile.

Walking through the newly imagined space, Melanie couldn’t believe her eyes—our signature cement tile pattern Fez (from our Echo Collection) was incorporated into wood boards. Intrigued, Melanie took a closer look. First thing she noticed: Unlike our standard, in-stock Fez, this interpretation was in two shades of blue. Getting closer still, Melanie discovered that it wasn’t actually concrete tile at all!

Our Fez pattern painted on boards at Anthropologie Image, Granada Tile.

Instead, the designers, obviously inspired by the chic shapes of Fez, painted the design on rough wooden boards rather than installing the tiles themselves. It’s an interesting take on our design and shows how Fez has captured the imaginations of many!

Designer Spotlight: Design Vidal

With more than projects to their credit, Karen and Guy Vidal, of Design Vidal Interior Design, have established themselves as go-to designers in the Los Angeles neighborhoods of Silver Lake, Los Feliz and beyond. They tackle a range of spaces, from charming historic bungalows to grand estates to sleek modern homes. Here at Granada Tile, we’re delighted to report they incorporated our cement tile into three of their recent projects.

First up, a compact kitchen. It’s got plenty of vintage charm—the stove, the Formica countertops and a metal sink. Rather than staying strictly period, the designers added contemporary flourishes. The whimsical dandelions on the wall are a charming touch. But, what we think really makes the space, is the bold backsplash in the Fez pattern from Granada Tile’s Echo Collection of concrete tile. It’s bold and modern (though it captures a feeling of Morocco at the same time) and injects color and fun into the classic space.

Design Vidal chose Granada Tile’s Fez pattern for a kitchen. Image, Susanne Hayek Photography.

Working their magic on another kitchen, the Design Vidal team opted for our Nara pattern. The ideas at work are similar. Take a small kitchen, open it up visually and give it character. The palette leans toward darker hues (forest green cabinets) but the vintage elements are very much present, down to the Formica countertops and metal sink. The Nara-tiled backsplash, with its monochromatic color scheme, add a mod touch.

As the tile backsplash, Nara adds a playful spark to a Los Angeles kitchen. Tile photo, Guy Vidal.

Last but not least, Design Vidal masterminded yet another lovely kitchen that features Granda Tile’s cement tile, in our Serengeti pattern this time. Here, they go one step further with the tile. It’s not just for the tile backsplash and wall tiles. Instead, the they tiled a small cabinet area between the sink and vintage stove. When looked at from a distance, the effect suggests solid wall of tile. The graphic look expands and enlivens the entire space.

Black-and-white Serengeti wall tiles and tile backsplash are set to create a positive/negative effect in a kitchen. Tile photo, Guy Vidal.

In their skilled hands, Design Vidal shows the myriad ways Granada Tile’s cement tiles can transform a space—and work beautifully no matter what the style.



Color Change: Venezia

Have you fallen in love with Venezia, one of the fabulous Echo Collection cement tile designs from Granada Tile? You have, haven’t you? But you’re still trying to decide on just the right colors. Easier said than done, you say, since we’ve come up with a rainbow of shades for you to choose from to create just the right palette for your cement tiles. Fear not. We’re here to help! Take a look at a few ideas for Venezia that give this amazing concrete tile wonderful versatility.

In their Los Angeles living room, Granada Tile’s clients opted for a cement tile carpet composed of our Venezia design—a classic patten that mixes foliate motifs with geometric ones. The green, blue and terra-cotta tones they chose bring warmth to the airy, sun-filled room with its views to a patio just outside.

Homeowners chose Venezia in bright, earthy colors for their LA living room. Image, Brian Sanderson.

Now imagine Venezia in an entirely different way. Clients of ours wanted an office sanctuary and Granada Tile’figures prominently in the design, with its grand carpet of concrete tiles—an unexpected and bold choice. The palette for this floor is light and bright, with yellow predominating. It’s a lovely complement to the pale wood found throughout the space.

Venezia for a home office. Image, Granada Tile.

You can take Venezia in an entirely different direction, too. Instead of going for multiple hues, why not try just do for a bold look that blends the traditional feel of the cement tile pattern with a chic, contemporary combination of just two colors. Here we’ve gone for white and olive, but imagine what else you can do. Black and coral? Midnight and sky? Your choices are endless.

Try using just two shades to create an entirely different look for Venezia. Image, Granada Tile.

To experiment more with colors and patterns and decide which combination suits you best, don’t forget to check out our interactive Echo Collection catalogue and our Share Design pages.

Installation Equation: Granada Tile in the Bath

Bathrooms and Granda Tile‘s cement tiles are a match made in design heaven—given our enormous array of choices. No matter what the style, we’ve got something that’s perfect for you. Looking for chic and minimal? Look no further than our Milano Collection. Want to bring some color into the bathroom? Our Echo Collection is just the ticket. Below we’ve rounded up a few of our favorite looks from our Echo Collection to get you inspired.

One of our most popular concrete tile designs, Fez, looks great just about anywhere. Its simple geometric pattern and Moroccan flavor make it an ideal choice for just about any space. Adrianna Lopez covered the walls and floor of a bathroom she designed with Fez making a seamless look. With the greenery and dark-wood cabinet and mirror, the room feels like a tropical retreat.

Fez on the floor and wall creates a seamless look. Image, Granada Tile.

Mission Tile West took an entirely different direction when they used our cement tile Chantilly (in a custom palette) for a bathroom project that skillfully blends modern and classic elements. While the faucet and window have a distinctly contemporary flair and the cabinets suggest Shaker roots, the rough tiles on the walls and our own cement tiles on the floor lend an ancient, almost monastic quality to the room. The soft, neutrals, interrupted only by the reds and blues of the cement tiles on the floor create create a peaceful retreat.

Granada Tile created custom cement tiles in a custom palette for a bathroom by Mission Tile West. Image, Brian Sanderson.

It’s all clean lines in a Hope Alexander–designed bathroom featuring Granada Tile’s Alcala pattern. She used the cement tiles on the floor, behind the sink and even inside the shower, creating a vibrant, seamless effect that’s thoroughly modern. In blue and white, the cement tiles add punch to the bathroom, while the swooping curves of the pattern bring another dimension to the crisp angles of the space.

Hope Alexander chose Alhambra for a bath. Image, Granada Tile.

Thinking of taking on a bathroom project soon? Let us help! As you can seen, we’ve got something for everybody.

Get the Look: Bringing Granada, Nicaragua, to You

Last week we showed you some amazing historical cement tile in Granada, Nicaragua—this week, we’ll share with you how to bring a little of that flavor into your own project. It’s not surprising, considering Granada Tile not only takes its name from the city but quite a bit of our concrete tile design inspiration comes from there too! We’ve rounded up a few of our cement tile designs below that show you how to capture the look of Granada.

Say you love the concrete tile pattern on the floor of the Granada Cultural Center. It’s the palette that grabs you, along with the geometry of the strapwork.

A sunburst and strapwork pattern at the Granada Cultural Center. Image, Granada Tile.

For your own project, try Granada Tile’s bold 10-by-10-inch Malaga-1022, a concrete tile pattern from our flagship Echo Collection. When rendered in silver, white, yellow and coral, it’s a perfect match for the cement tiles on the Cultural Center’s floor. Of course, you can customize it—selecting your own color scheme.

Capture the striking strapwork pattern at the Granada Cultural Center with our cement tile Malaga-1022. Image, Granada Tile.

Did you love the circles, flowers, and the soft, rosy tones of the covered arcade along Granada’s Central Plaza?

Rosy hues cover the floor of an outdoor arcade by the Central Plaza. Image, Granada Tile.

Choose our concrete tile pattern Bordeaux-20 offers a similar mix of circles and stylized flowers and then opt for reds and pinks.

In pink and red hues, Bordeaux echoes the design found in Granada. Image, Granada Tile.

In a more modern vein, you can recreate the dizzying, monochromatic effect found in a Granada sitting room.

A monochromatic palette creates a dizzying geometric effect. Image, Granada Tile.

Maldon-453 offers a similarly bold look when the triangles composing the pattern are done in a gray-scale.

The geometric beauty of Maldon. Image, Granada Tile.

Of course, you can always try out your own ideas with our interactive Echo Collection catalogue to see how you can get the look!

Breaking News: Beachwood Cafe Nominated for an AIA Award

Five years ago Intelligentsia Coffee opened in Silver Lake—the company’s first Los Angeles location. The space, designed by Bestor Architecture and prominently featuring Granada Tile‘s cement tile in our Fez pattern around the cafe (as floor tiles and as wall tiles), won praise and ultimately an AIA award for excellence in the cafe/bar category.

In 2012, we’re pleased to report, the AIA Los Angeles has recognized another of Barbara Bestor’s local projects. A panel of judges, including chefs Evan Kleiman and Michael Voltaggio and architect Mark Rios, has nominated the newly remodeled Beachwood Cafe (complete with Granada Tile’s concrete tiles) for a Restaurant Design Award in the restaurant category.

Bestor took an existing restaurant space in Beachwood Canyon and transformed it into a cozy, homey environment—the perfect neighborhood joint. Mixing materials (rough-hewn wood beams, painted-wood paneling, our own cement floor tiles in our Khufu tile design, and wallpaper), Bestor created a lively environment great to grab a quick cup of coffee or to enjoy a leisurely weekend breakfast with friends and family.

Khufu covers the floor at the Beachwood Cafe, now nominated for an AIA Los Angeles Restaurant Design Award. Image, Granada Tile. Tile photo, Granada Tile.

To show your love for Barbara and Beachwood Cafe vote for Beachwood Cafe as a People’s Choice winner in the restaurant category! The winners will be announced at a ceremony on June 22nd, at the Dwell on Design conference at the LA Convention Center. We’ll be sure to report back with the results! And, don’t forget to visit, too! It’s located at 2695 North Beachwood Drive, Los Angeles, CA, 90068. Call them at (323) 871-1717. They’re open Tuesday through Friday from 10 in the morning till 10 at night; on Saturday from eight am till 10 pm and Sunday from eight am till three pm.

Living History: Granada, Nicaragua

At just 10 years old, Marcos Cajina set out to explore his native Nicaragua on his own. He wanted to see Lake Nicaragua, the world’s twentieth largest lake, and explore its many inlets. On his travels, he came across the brilliantly colored cement tiles that, since the 19th century, lined surfaces in spaces public and private all around the country. Fast forward to 2001. Marcos and his wife, Melanie Stephens, live in Los Angeles. Those concrete tiles he first saw all those years ago still stand out in his mind, so he builds his own hydraulic press in his basement and starts creating his own cement tiles. Experiments with processes and materials follow, and he and Melanie head to France for an intensive research trip. By 2004 they establish production facilities in Nicaragua, and Granada Tile (named after the city on the shores of Lake Nicaragua where Marcos learned about cement tile) begins rolling the Echo Collection off the presses.

The floor at the Granada Cultural Center that started it all! Image, Granada Tile.

With production facilities still located in Nicaragua, Marcos and Melanie return often to the country and get a chance to take in the amazing tiles that cover so many surfaces around the city. There’s the 19th-century floor at the Granada Cultural Center—the floor that planted the image of cement tile in Marcos’s mind as a child—with simple, elegant pattern of strap work and stars. The palette is limited, yet it pops against the creamy hues of the stone and masonry around it.

Cement tiles abound outdoors in Granada, Nicaragua. Image, Granada Tile.

Outside, too, boasts plenty of cement tile. Paving a walkway of an exterior arcade in the city’s Central Plaza, a vibrant mix of tiles of predominantly pink and deep red provide a zesty contrast with the bold yellow of the building next to it.

A geometric pattern in a Granada sitting room creates an Escher-like effect. Image, Granada Tile.

Surprising cement tile finds pop up around the city. In a sitting room, monochromatic concrete tiles laid in a complex pattern create a striking, dizzying three-dimensional effect. The look departs from the more traditional designs and palettes found elsewhere in the city, but the impact is just as strong.

It’s little wonder Marcos fell in love with cement tiles—in Granada, their lure is irresistible.