Blurring the boundaries: tiling the great outdoors

Tiles can offer an inspired solution for transforming outside areas, with a range of applications from flooring to feature walls, and pools to bars. In this article Mark Hillier, specification manager at leading commercial tile supplier CTD Architectural Tiles, discusses the key considerations for using tiles to create a beautiful yet practical outdoor space…

green and grey swimming pool tiles by CTD architectural tiles

The concept of extending inside living and public spaces to the outside is becoming an increasingly popular design trend, with more and more hotels opting to create a seamless flow between the indoors and outdoors. Indoor-outdoor tiles offer the ideal solution for this design solution; whereas in the past separate tiles would be required for the different spaces, these tiles can be used in both environments. With a varied range of these indoor-outdoor tiles available, the Matter collection by Zyx in particular is proving popular thanks to its range of applications, colours and shapes.

Tiled outdoor space at Aman New York

Image credit: CTD Architectural Tiles

When designing for public spaces like hotels, safety plays a key role in choosing flooring. Selecting outdoor floor tiles is no exception to this, and it’s vital to select a product which offers a minimum anti-slip rating of PTV36 (Pendulum Test Value) to ensure minimal risk. There is now a huge variety of anti-slip outdoor floor tiles available on the market, suitable for any project, style and budget – meaning there’s no need to compromise on safety or aesthetics.

Choosing outdoor floor tiles with a high slip resistance is particularly important for areas likely to be regularly exposed to wet conditions, whether that’s an outdoor pool or simply an uncovered space likely to be affected by rain. Porcelain-based tiling tends to offer the highest PTV ratings, but it’s always best to discuss ratings for specific tiles with your representative. As well as providing maximum safety, porcelain tiles are not affected by the elements, making them the ideal material for those outdoor spaces and ensuring that they will be enjoyed by guests for many years to come.

creating a design impact in outdoor public spaces with CTD Atchitectural tiles

Image credit: CTD Architectural Tiles

Whether it’s for a luxury pool, bar area or feature wall, tiles are the perfect way for a hotel to make a real design statement. Outdoor swimming pools tend to be a natural focal point, but that doesn’t mean the space can’t be taken to the next level. Tiles can elevate a leisure pool when the designer opts for visually interesting tiles rather than the traditional plain blue, with collections such as Matter, Aqua and Nubia guaranteed to turn heads.

Bar areas and feature walls are another great way to incorporate tiles into an outdoor space designed to impress guests, with almost endless options when it comes to shapes, colours and patterns.

Wood-effect outdoor floor tiles are a great way to create a calming environment for guests

Image credit: CTD Architectural Tiles

With many guests likely to be escaping the stresses of everyday life during their stay, creating calm spaces within a hotel is becoming an increasingly important design choice. This principle can be applied to a hotel’s outdoor areas, and tiles can be a valuable tool in evoking a sense of calm. The soothing effect of being outdoors can be emphasised through choosing neutral floor tiles designed to look like concrete or cement, while calming shades of blue and green are a popular choice for outdoor feature walls.

Similarly, the use of wood-effect floor tiles is a great way to create a serene outdoor environment thanks to its links to nature. CTD Architectural Tiles recently started supplying the Cortina collection, which comprises wood-effect tiles inspired by the use of timber in the Alps and Dolomites – and what makes this collection stand out even further is that the tiles can be used both indoors and outdoors, creating that sense of calm that flows from the inside out.

CTD Architectural Tiles is one of our Recommended Suppliers and regularly features in our Supplier News section of the website. If you are interested in becoming one of our Recommended Suppliers, please email Katy Phillips.

Main image credit: CTD Architectural Tiles