Luxury vinyl tile touts easy care

WILMINGTON, MA—Luxury vinyl tile (LVT) is trending in hospitality. Created to simulate the look and feel of wood, stone or even ceramic tile, the options are limitless for this versatile, durable and cost-effective material in hotel settings.

LVT is a hard surface flooring that has a stronger resilience compared to other options for commercial use. It is composed of a vinyl backing; a color or photographic film layer; and a protective polyurethane coating or wear layer. This type of flooring is lightweight and can be installed over existing flooring.

“Parterre was one of the original manufacturers of LVT product,” said Ralph Grogan, CEO, Parterre Flooring Systems. “We were established in 1991 and over the last couple of years, there’s been a lot of business as LVT expanded in the marketplace.”

With durable characteristics, Parterre’s LVT was originally used in restaurants’ common areas because of its ability to withstand high traffic, and the maintenance was fairly simple, as well as affordable. 

“We started out in those common areas; people in hospitality saw the benefits of LVT, and the company moved into more floor space in the hotels, replacing carpet. It’s easy to maintain, and the designs have significantly improved over the last several years,” said Grogan.

In the manufacturing of its LVT flooring, Parterre uses a process called the hot press method, which is a heat-infused technology. It helps to provide clarity in the design and durability in the performance.

“We apply high heat and pressure to the different layers of the product, and it fuses together for greater quality and control,” said Grogan.

A durable, well-made product is key in hotels where floors take a beating—whether it’s the rolling of luggage, moving furniture or heavy foot traffic. In commercial spaces, LVT provides resistance to scuff, scratches and water.

“We pay attention to ensure the performance level that goes into the product,” he said. “Our film design is the usage of realistic textures—whether it’s wood or stone—and the hot press method gives much greater clarity of the end result. 

“The last thing it does is give it real stabilization of the product,” he continued. “It won’t shrink or expand in hot or cold temperatures or high moisture areas. The way we manufacture it creates a tight bond between layers.”

Grogan touted the low maintenance of LVT flooring. “We recommend regular sweeping and mopping of the product, with a two-bucket system of mopping where the clean water is on one side and dirty water is on the other,” he said. “Waxing or polishing is not required. When you buy it, you have it installed and you don’t need to polish it. We’ve all gone to hotels where you can’t tell if a floor is clean; with LVT, it’s easy for someone to see the floor is clean. For LVT, we recommend a 20-ml.-wear layer and we’ll do an embossing of the product that makes it difficult to scratch.”

Parterre’s easy-care LVT is seen in the spaces of major hotel brands such as AC Hotels by Marriott, Hilton Garden Inn and others.

“We have the product in two AC Hotels by Marriott properties,” he said. “They picked out a modern teak, which is a very contemporary-looking product. The LVT is in the guestrooms, bathrooms and they do have some soft surface in the hallways. It’s all LVT and very sleek, a good look for the guest and identifies well with the AC brand. It’s new, fresh and clean and very easy for the staff to upkeep, as you just sweep the room.”

Grogan explained that empire linear oak installed at the Hilton Garden Inn near Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, MA, created a modern look and feel. “It coordinated well with the carpet and it gave them a branded look. It’s also easy to clean, just sweeping and mopping—no waxing required,” he said.

As a fellow traveler, Grogan understands the need for the basics of a guestroom done well. “I travel 50% of the time, and when you go into a hotel room, you want it to smell clean and feel clean in the room. It’s nice to go into a hotel room now with LVT and see the designs have improved,” he said. “It’s a great looking wood-like or stone-like product that’s durable; it will last longer than the hotel will want it to, as many hotels will refresh themselves in three to five years. All of our warranties are 15 years, so the product will last. It won’t need to be replaced until it’s time.” HB

Avoid dents, scratches with proper protection

KENOSHA, WI—Expanded Technologies was born out of a need to solve a problem. While remodeling a turn-of-the century schoolhouse, Richard Bushey discovered that the original pine floors were being scratched due to chairs and desks moving across the floor. It all started with an idea.

Since its inception in 1987, Expanded Technologies has supplied floor, furniture and surface protectors for all environments, including hospitality. Among the company’s core products: Clear Sleeve Sliders for carpet and Clear Sleeve Floor Protectors for hard-surface floors.

The Clear Sleeve has numerous benefits, including a flex sleeve that conforms to the size and shape of a chair or table legs; protects floors from scratches, rust stains and marring; reduces the noise of moving furniture; and enables the weight to be evenly distributed for better wear.

“A floor protector has a felt base to protect floors from scratches and scuffs during normal use of furniture. Our custom felt provides a soft barrier between the surface and the floor,” said Bret Bushey, VP of Expanded Technologies. “It extends the life and keeps it looking great. A wear barrier between the sleeve and the felt helps quiet down rooms tremendously.”

In Minnesota, Cragun’s Resort on Gull Lake reached out to Expanded Technologies for a solution to its problem. “They noticed that the new furniture purchased for the conference room area was snagging the floor and damaging the carpet,” said Bushey. “As longtime customers, they used our Clear Sleeve Floor Protectors for their hard surfaces but didn’t have a solution for carpeted surfaces. We recommended the Clear Sleeve Sliders and the feedback we received was that it extended the life of the furniture and carpet. Now, every piece of furniture that comes into the resort has one of our floor protectors on it.”

In addition, Expanded Technologies’ products are distributed and sold to major hotel brands and resorts across the country, including Marriott International, DoubleTree by Hilton, Staybridge Suites and others.

Bushey recommends the use of floor protection with luxury vinyl tile (LVT) and luxury vinyl plank (LVP), popular now due to lower cost, the ability to customize it to the space and ease of care.

“It’s upscale looking and easy to maintain,” said Bushey. “Instead of a floor finish, the LVT has a protective film, which is great for maintenance. You don’t have to keep applying a new floor finish. But if that surface is damaged, it will scratch the film and may destroy the floor, which makes it even more important to use floor protection on every piece of furniture.”

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