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Everything you need to know about Polished Travertine

Everything you need to know about Polished Travertine


Porous limestone formed due to different temperature and pressure is called Travertine. It is usually formed in hot springs and geysers. It has different uses as in construction and decoration. Depending upon usage these tiles are sealed. As travertine is porous, coats of sealant are applied for the protection from dust and debris.


Variant chemical composition, temperature and pressure generates a variety of colors to the polished travertine. These colors also vary depending upon the time period which these natural stones have gone through. Some colors these travertine stones are available in are Walnut, Silver, Noche, Gold, Pearl and others.


Travertine stones can be used in a variety of styles. It all depends upon its installation area. Some variety for Travertine style is below:

Mosaic: Small pieces, varying from 1” to 8”, are combined in different order for backsplash and accent walls.

Paver: Installed over sand, 1 ¼” thick paver tile is well suited for patios, pool decks and driveways.

Tile: Travertine tiles are installed over mud. They are 3/8” in thickness. Normally used for installation at indoor locations.


Travertine stones come with various finishes which can enhance the beauty of the area as well as protect the stone. Some different variety of finishes are:

Polished: Polishes travertine stone is smoothed to get shiny reflective surface. It give the look and feel of marble. It is widely used in commercial areas.

Honed: Mostly used in home, it has matte finish and low shine with smooth flat surface.

Brushed: Brushed Travertine comes with matt finish and rough texture. It gives historic look and has more friction since it has texture.

Tumbled: It has high texture as compared to brushed travertine with no shine. Edges are blunt giving a ragged look. It is commonly used in outdoor areas.

Pros and Cons 

In order to install polished travertine in any area, one must be completely aware of its merits and demerits. A thorough cost and benefit analysis can help to make a good decision.

Durability: Since durability of travertine depends upon the finish type, polished travertine tiles are most durable and long lasting. Though their shine wears off with the passage of time but still the pores won’t wide till the sealant is intact.

Appearance: Polished travertine give a luxurious and distinctive look which enhances the beauty of the area where it is installed. Well suitable for counter tops, backsplash and shower walls. Polished travertine’s glossy shine gives the effect of marble. Ideal for cosmopolitan décor.

Installation: When compared to marble or granite, polished travertine is relatively economical and less expensive in installation. Since the stone is softer than marble, its easy cutting feature reduces the labor cost. Moreover, it can be adjusted to any location due to easily size reduction trait.

Sound and Thermal Insulation: Travertine stone are porous and possess low density. Due to these features travertine has ability of sound and thermal insulation. In case of polished travertine, it may vary due to the presence of sealant over it.

Color Spectrum: Polished travertine has a wide color variety which helps to attain any look from modern to ancient. Be it gray, tones of brown or shades of rust, travertine has all of them. It can be installed in contrast to other stones as well as shades of your choice.

There are some cons to polished travertine as well. These can be handled with maintenance and proper care and travertine is going to give the chic look to the area installed for long period of time.

Porosity: Since travertine is porous hence it can easily absorb all the grease or color spills over it. For this reason, it is not recommended on areas with heavy use of eatables. However, if anyone wanted it be installed on such locations, it needs to be properly sealed and the sealer should be refreshed periodically in order to maintain the tile.

Reactive to Acids: Travertine tiles are made from stone which are created through deposition of calcium and other mineral salts. Due to this, they are prone to acid and leaves stain and holes. Sealing them is the proper way in order to protect them.

Slippery: Polished travertine has is slippery when wet. Therefore, it is not recommended on high traffic areas. Moreover, the polished travertine is also not encouraged for bathroom flooring due to this.

Though polished travertine has some loop holes but still it is economical and handy option when it comes to the selection of stone for décor.

Polished Travertine Products

Some of the famous and widely used polished travertine products are:

Persian Red Vein Cut Polished Filled Travertine: The subtle brick red tone with hues of ochre and yellow. The stone is enhanced in its beauty via polished glossy finish.

Sparta Vein Cut Polished Filled Travertine: Linear veined travertine with shiny polished surface with shades of gold. It has three color varieties.


When it comes to maintenance of polished travertine, there are certain dos and don’ts which need to be kept in mind.

Polishing Protectors: In order to protect the tile or area, polishing protector should be used.

Avoid Reactive Substance: Avoid polishing with acidic cleaner or reactive powders. They will leave stains and reduce the life of tile.

Stain Removal: Use poultice as stain remover instead of any other reactive substance. You can also buy a good cleanser made specifically for removing stains from polished travertine.

Refill holes: Fill out the holes and troughs which may have been developed with the passage of time.

Reseal: Apply sealant on periodic basis since it use to worn away as time passes by and hence the tile will become absorbent and will have more tough stains or blisters.

Mira Soap: Mira soap is natural stone soap which will add a patina to the surface of the tile it is applied to. It creates a protection film which helps the tile to enhance its natural shine. Mira soap is no resin and should be used as per directions.


Some of the uses and areas where polished travertine can be used and will serve the purpose are:

Hallways and Foyers

Polished travertine creates a touch of class when it comes to creating first impressions. Installing them in Hallways and Foyers in the commercial area or office workplace can enhance the image.

Tub and Shower

Since travertine has relation with history i.e. it remained part of historic buildings and spas, polished travertine gives a retro look when used around tub and showers. It gives a blend of ancient as well as modern feel.

Bathroom Vanity Tops

Polished travertine is widely used for bathroom vanity tops. It can be used in contrasting tones and different styles.


Polished travertine stone is a really good option to consider for your bedroom. Depending upon the type of travertine stones you opt for, you can create the bedroom of your dreams that is totally in accordance with your taste and style. Hence in regions with hot climate, it makes the room floor cool. The neutral tones in bedroom even embellished with some medallion gives nice look and provides variety of options for bedroom furniture from sober to funky.

Living Room

For areas with hot climate a cool underfoot is all a person requires. It soothes your feet and make the night much cooler. Polished travertine is there to serve you in hot weather.


Polished travertine is considered as one of the most ideal options for kitchen remodeling ventures. Its use in kitchens is quite popular thanks to its strength, variety of colors and overall appeal. Polished travertine tiles and slabs can be used in kitchens to achieve a very chic and contemporary look. Be it mosaic backsplash or countertops made from polished travertine earthy tones make the modish look.


Polished travertine pavers can make your driveway look very stylish and cool. Also, the absorbent feature of travertine helps driveway to dry out quickly so you won’t have to mop after it rains. Polished travertine is a suitable choice for driveways because he durability and robustness of the natural stone holds its ground even with a lot of foot walk and heavy car weight hence serving the purpose for which it is installed.


Polished travertine can be part of the courtyard. The fresh tones of green blend with the neutral tones of polished travertine pavers for a unique outdoor experience. Similar to the foyer, the courtyard can make your first impression persistent. Highly recommended for commercial and office courtyards.

Patios and Decking Area

Polished travertine installed in patios and deck areas can make your outer areas look extremely beautiful. Polished travertine surrounded by greenery looks exquisite. The neutral pallet colors of polished travertine helps you to arrange the stylish contrasting deck furniture. Make your outdoor cooking area look stylish and embellished with polished travertine and celebrate with joy.

Pool Area

For pool area, polished travertine pavers is a really good idea as travertine stone doesn’t get hot underneath direct sunlight thus keeps your feet soothing and prevents them from burning. Make ideal party location around pool with polished travertine tiles.

These various uses of travertine as well as polished travertine will help you to make the best out of the area you are installing.

Design Ideas

  • Beige polished travertine is cosmopolitan tile which always remain trendy. It can be installed in bathroom. Embellish the shower section with glass shower wall and the door. It will become more sophisticated when combined with the polished travertine tiles. Use polished mosaic tiles in shower are with large tiles in the rest of the bathroom.
  • Use polished travertine in contrasting shades to the bathroom walls and flooring. It will enhance the look. For instance, one can use dark shade of polished travertine for flooring and adorn the sink and shower with light hues using variety of patterns and sizes.
  • Polished old wood travertine flooring can be a timeless investment. The polished old wood travertine tiles can be used both for a country inspired look or a rustic old money design depending upon the type of the furniture the tiles is paired with.
  • Use brick shade polished travertine along with mosaic style in the middle. It will add grace and beauty. An innovative way of using polished travertine for creating mosaics is by mixing and matching different colors and creating a big mosaic piece in the living room above the fire place.
  • In order to give contemporary look to the area, use either the silver polished travertine or the ivory French pattern polished travertine tiles. Mixing and matching these two will result in an exquisite masterpiece that will be the epitome of modernity.
  • In the hall way, one can use polished travertine in mosaic style with geometric medallion in the center. It will give subtle unique look to the area.
  • Polished travertine can be used for creating grand entrance ways. For homeowners that love a minimalistic design, we’d recommend the polished ivory travertine tiles for creating an entrance that has a timeless appeal.
  • Polished gold travertine will be the perfect investment for homeowners who have an expensive taste and want a luxurious house which oozes out opulence. The polished gold travertine tiles paired with ebony or mahogany furniture will make for a scene right of an interior design magazine.


In short, polished travertine is the best way one can have in order to generate the best out of your location. It not only looks good it in almost any location but is also very durable which makes it both a sustainable and beautiful investment. Use it in whichever way best suitable for you. Be it honed, brushed or polished, the stone servers in the best possible manner. Cool flooring in hot winter, absorbent if not sealed and hence used for locations like bathroom flooring etc. Colesum which is about 2000 yrs old is made up of travertine. It shows that this tile and stone can stand through the course of time, hence proving that would be worth spending the money on.

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