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Saltwater Kitchen clad in stone new to the U.S.

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The hardest part of Saltwater Kitchen’s soft opening was probably the exterior walls, according to the man who installed it.

The outside walls of Rick Erwin’s new restaurant at Haywood Mall is one of the state’s first examples of building with a manufactured stone called Dekton.

“Dekton is a synthesized combination of 20 minerals and is incredibly durable,” said John Rozelle of Rozelle Stone. His Easley company fabricated and completed the job.

Rozelle said the stone has been popular in Europe for years but is only recently making its way into projects in North America. He said Europeans typically are more willing than Americans to spend more money at the front end of construction to reduce maintenance and rebuilding costs later. He said Dekton is more expensive than many other construction materials but holds up over time better than other long-lasting products, even stalwarts such as granite. 

“Dekton can hold its own when it comes to mother nature. It’s UV resistant and will not fade or degrade in extreme temperatures,” he said. “It’s an ultra-compact surface with zero porosity, which makes it a great exterior for Greenville’s sun-soaked summers.”

Rozelle talked about the stone while having lunch at Saltwater Kitchen as he prepared for a trip to the Dekton factory in Spain.

Dekton is created by a large press which uses extremely high temperatures and pressure to simulate the metamorphic changes that happen to natural stone over thousands of years, he said. The result is resistant to acid rain, fire and heat.

Dekton has been used in buildings like the Rafa Nadal Academy in Spain, the Vantage Point Archway Tower redevelopment project in London and the Porsche Design Boutique in Oak Brook, Ill., according to a news release.

Architects appreciate Dekton for the uninterrupted surface it creates, the news release said. Buildings clad in it have a clean, minimalist appearance. The product can be made in different designs. The Saltwater Kitchen stone was chosen for its resemblance to aged steel, Rozelle said.

Reach Ross Norton at 864-720-1222.

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