Best Natural Stone Surfaces for Bars and Restaurants

Best Natural Stone Surfaces for Bars and Restaurants

July 10, 2018

Bars and restaurants are made beautiful with unique natural stone designs. The right stone can create ambience and style, all while withstanding the traffic that these establishments experience.

Bars and restaurants are made beautiful with unique natural stone designs. The right stone can create ambience and style, all while withstanding the traffic that these establishments experience.

Surfaces in bar and restaurants have to stand up to spills, abrasions, standing water, citrus and acids, and pigmented liquids on a daily basis. From tabletops to bar tops, kitchen prep stations, a wayward knife, or a spilled glass of wine, your surface is subject to plenty of risk for damage. Fortunately, there are natural stone options for all applications in a restaurant. Here are some of our favorite ways to use stone in bars and restaurants:

Natural Stone

Straight from the earth, natural stones such as granite and marble embrace the best that Mother Nature has to offer. When you’re creating a stunning dining experience, there is a natural stone that will match your style and needs.


Formed when molten rock erupts from the Earth’s core, granite is a classic choice for applications that demand an affordable, durable, and beautiful natural stone. The swirls and veins in granite are created by the twisting and lifting of tectonic plates during the rock’s cooling process, so no two slabs are exactly the same, even when they come from the same quarry.

Granite is scored a 7 on the Mohs scale of hardness, and won’t scratch or etch through everyday use. It is heat-resistant, so the surface will not blister or melt when exposed to heat – a must for tabletops that are required to withstand hot plates.

Cosmic Black by Antolini Luigi & C
Cosmic Black by Antolini Luigi & C

There are countless designs and styles of granite to help create any aesthetic you seek. Dramatic and bold designs, like the forest green Verde San Francisco, the layered red and brown Harlequin, or the ocean-like Blue Wave can create a show-stealing focal point in any local restaurant. Alternatively, choose from a stunning white, such as Andromedia White, Fantasy White, or White Quartz for a subtle but trendy design. Other neutrals, like the beige-gold Giallo Ornamental "V", warm and creamy Millenium Cream, and Grey Silk Leather can accompany nearly any décor while creating a classy, timeless look.


With its striking veins, fine texture and unlimited color selection, marble demands attention and captures the imagination. Used in Michelangelo’s David and the Palace of Versailles, marble has been a cherished symbol of luxury and refinement throughout history.

Marble rates a 3 on the Mohs hardness scale, and is considered a “soft” stone – hence its common use in sculpture. And while most people think of the traditional Italian white varieties of marble, there are actually a wide range of styles and colors to create different aesthetics. Dramatic shades like the rippling brown and blue Majestic Ocean Cipollino, the white veins interspersed within the blue of the Lapis Lazuli design, or the black and white undulations of the Silver Waves make a statement that customers won’t forget. You can also embrace the classic look of white marble, with the linear veining of the Calacatta Apuano design, or a more subtle and uniform design like Mystery White.

Marble helps create a sophisticated aesthetic, and there are several surprising ways to display the stone’s classic grandeur without risking damage. Make a statement at a host stand, or a backsplash behind the bar, to showcase marble without exposing it to excessive heat or moisture.


Quartzite is a natural stone that is taking center stage in the design world, as appreciation grows for its marble-like appearance, granite-like durability and application possibilities. Quartzite is a naturally occurring metamorphic rock that starts out as sandstone, and evolves over time under intense heat and pressure.

Quartzite has a similar hardness as granite, rated at around 7 to 8 on the Mohs scale. It is resistant to scratching and is not acid-soluble, so it won’t etch when exposed to vinegar or citrus juices. Since quartzite is durable and heat-resistant, it is ideal for countertops, bartops, tabletops, and nearly anywhere that granite could be used.

Bright gold designs like Giallo Macauba can brighten any space with a showstopping glow, while the layered greys of Quartzite Himalaya add movement and an earthy elegance to any space. For a darker design with plenty of movement, Fusion Night features hints of gold and green that are reminiscent of the night sky.

About the company: Antolini Luigi & C

Antolini Luigi & C is the top producer of the finest natural stone, leading the way in technology, quality, and customer service. With more than 50 years in the industry, the Verona, Italy-based company is a worldwide distributor of natural stone.

Antolini merges a respect for the history and story of each slab with an openness to outside-the-box thinking that allows the company to grow and advance with new technologies for the natural stone industry. “Constantly evolving, the company has always supported new technology and development in natural stone processing – without forgetting the importance of quality,” Antolini’s story states. That commitment to technology enables Antolini to offer the highest quality stones that are perfected using their own exclusive methods.

Neolith Sintered Compact Surfaces

Neolith’s signature Sintered Compact Surfaces offer remarkable durability, making them ideal for use “behind the scenes” of bars and restaurants. Commercial kitchens are some of the busiest, most dangerous places in a restaurant, making a scratch-resistant surface a must-have. When the knives are flying, fileting, slicing, and dicing, there’s no need to worry that a wayward knife will leave a gash on these surfaces. Neolith’s Sintered Compact Surfaces are so strong, in fact, that cooks can save the dishwashers some time by skipping the cutting board altogether, opting for food preparation directly on the surface. And since Neolith surfaces are 100% natural and resin-free, they don’t release any harmful substances. That means it’s perfectly safe to prepare food directly on the countertop.

 Pictured: Juan Amador preparing a 5-star dish on his Neolith Beton countertop, at his restaurant Fine Wines & Food Fair in Vienna, Austria.
Pictured: Juan Amador preparing a 5-star dish on his Neolith Beton countertop, at his restaurant Fine Wines & Food Fair in Vienna, Austria.

As important as durability is in a kitchen, perhaps the most important consideration is hygiene. Nonporous and easy to clean, liquids and juices from raw meats are easily wiped away.

Additionally, these surfaces’ heat-resistant and stain-resistant benefits mean that there won’t be damage from ambient or direct heat, pigmented liquids, or chemical cleaners. Neolith surfaces can stand up to the strongest cleaning agents, without compromising on porosity or appearance. About the company

About the company: NEOLITH

Neolith Sintered Compact Surfaces are the result of years of research by parent company TheSize, in Spain. Profound dedication to innovation has resulted in technologies that make Neolith unmatched in the industry. Among the most important of these is the Sintering Technology, which subjects 100% natural materials to very high pressures and temperatures, creating unprecedented physical and mechanical features.

Neolith surfaces are made from three groups of elements: minerals from granite (quartz and feldspar), which provide the product with hardness and strength; minerals from glass and silica that provide chemical stability; and natural oxides that offer chromatic properties. All of Neolith’s surfaces combine the very best natural raw material with state-of-the-art sintering technology, to create high-tech, durable slabs that are resistant to scratching, stains, extreme temperature changes, moisture, high traffic, chemicals, and UV rays. Neolith is distributed exclusively in the Mid-Atlantic by MARVA®.

Cambria Quartz

Bar tops are subject to plenty of moisture and citrus juices, so it’s important to have a surface that won’t etch or absorb liquids. Cambria quartz perfectly fits the bill, as their combination of 93% natural quartz, one of the hardest minerals on Earth, and 7% resin, embraces the beauty of natural quartz while enhancing the stone’s durability.

Cambria uses cutting-edge technology and processes to improve the durability of their surfaces. As a result, the upscale appeal of the stone is married with a resilience that makes the surface useful for years to come. Cambria surfaces are nonporous and unlikely to crack or scratch – important for busy prep stations in a restaurant.

Casa Del Barco Bart Top | Design: Weybourne™ | Marble Collection™ by Cambria
Casa Del Barco Bart Top | Design: Weybourne™ | Marble Collection™ by Cambria

Cambria Quartz is an ideal option to add elegance and luxury to a restaurant and bar. With 150+ designs and nineteen different edge profiles to choose from, as well as an array of tools to match the perfect paint color or complementary designs, it’s easy to create any desired aesthetic for your next restaurant or bar.

About the company: Cambria

With Cambria quartz surfaces, you may rest assured that you are getting high quality American-made craftsmanship and close-to-home customer service. Your quartz surfaces are responsibly obtained by conscientious partners and polished using 100% recycled water – a practice that saves an estimated 1.6 billion gallons of water per year. A limited lifetime warranty for all Cambria products and outstanding customer service further ensures that you will be satisfied with your Cambria experience for the lifetime of a residential or commercial space.

With Cambria Quartz, you can be certain that if you return to a design years later, you can still find a matching slab -- there will always be more of the same Cambria design available, and you will always be able to find a perfect match. Cambria is distributed exclusively in the Mid-Atlantic by MARVA®.

Bars and restaurants have unique demands for functionality and style. With MARVA, you have a local partner for design advice and guidance to help you find the best natural stone options available on the market today. MARVA has five showroom locations with a wide range of natural stone slabs for you to view in person. Stop by a MARVA showroom and get started on your next project today.

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