A couple of weeks ago, Chief Creative Officer Rob Polacek and Studio Director Nick Domitrovich headed to Valencia, Spain to visit the Porcelanosa factory. We asked them a few questions about the trip to learn about the journey.

Where is the Porcelanosa factory? Does the context of their location influence their work? 

ND: Their factory is in Valencia, Spain, which is a great city because it has this amazing contrast between old and new design. There is an area called the City of Arts and Sciences, with all of this futuristic architecture by Calatrava, which is then juxtaposed by all of that old city charm, since the city was founded in 138 BC and has a rich history.

RP: Their location in Spain influences their work with a Spanish aesthetic and work ethic. There was a great sense of pride from the employees and they always spoke so highly of the family, who has owned the company since 1973. It seems that there is a level of respect and leadership from the family to their employees, inspiring both dedication to and innovation in their work.

What was something you were surprised by at Porcelanosa?

RP: The factory and operations are highly modernized, and their use of tech (robots! They have robots!!) and recycling programs in manufacturing are amazing to witness. Robots and tech to help maintain product cohesiveness and quality, recycle materials, and support a local community of workers.

ND: I was surprised by the breadth of work they do, which spans everything from tiles to cladding to kitchens and plumbing. They really are a one-stop shop, whereas I had known them more for their tiles.

What inspiration did you take away from the tour that you’ll use in your design work? 

ND: They do a great job of showcasing their product in various vignettes throughout each of their showrooms. It’s one thing to see it online or as a small sample, and another as a full installation that you can touch and see. This then sparks ideas for how to utilize their products in unique and different ways.

RP: A new way to look at using tile in innovative ways in interior design.