Don’t get floored by flooring! A guide to choosing the best flooring
Last updated: 09/05/2017
There are thousands of different styles of flooring to choose from so selecting flooring that reflects your personal style can be difficult. Each type of flooring offers varying degrees of quality, strength, comfort and stain-resistance.
The main types of flooring available are:
- Carpets and rugs
- Ceramic tile
Before selecting which flooring you want, it pays to think about which flooring you actually need!
For instance, how much usage will your flooring undertake? Do you regularly entertain? Will it be used by crew members e.g. engineers/chefs? If so, you may want to pick high durability perhaps even opting for commercial grade. The choice of flooring also varies depending on where it will be used on your superyacht; a luxurious wool carpet may be fine for the bedroom but may not offer sufficient stain protection in a dining area.
What to consider when selecting flooring for your yacht
The type of flooring you have can greatly impact the sound inside of a room. Hard materials like wood and tile reflect sound without muting it, and therefore are a less popular choice inside a cinema room for example, as the sound would echo or travel , potentially disturbing others.
In soft materials such as fabrics, carpets and rugs, sound tends to absorb and reduce noise levels. This can be a benefit in large rooms in which the sound of radio, television, computer and other modern appliances can become bothersome.
Another advantage of carpets and rugs is the warmth that it offers both in terms of ambiance and insulation properties. Carpets and rugs help avoid the warm air leaving the room, whereas non fabric flooring is not as effective.
There is a vast selection of fibres, styles and prices of carpets and rugs for superyachts. Today, most carpets are made from synthetic materials but the highest quality come from natural sources. The main fibre types are nylon, polyester, acrylic, wool and silk.
- Nylon is strong, scuff resistant and easily cleaned. It retains colour well and resists mildew. Most nylon carpets are stain-resistant to protect against household spills and stains.
- Polyester has a luxurious feel, rich colour and is one of the most effective fibres for resisting stains. However, it is a softer fibre that tends to mat and crush more easily than nylon.
- Acrylic has the look and feel of wool at a lower price. It has a low static level and stands up well to sunlight and mildew however it attracts and holds oily stains.
- Wool is one the most expensive and the most luxurious choices. It offers moderate stain resistance however it is easy to clean because the bulky fibres hold dirt high in the pile.
- Silk – Carpets and rugs made from this are often the most intricate and valuable pieces of flooring. Quality silk rugs are robust pieces but cleaning should only be carried out by a professional. They are the pinnacle of the rug world and are exquisite centre-pieces or focal points for any room, or any art collection.
The majority of flooring on the market today is naturally stain-resistant, hardwood and stone being the main obvious ones, but most carpets and rugs have had some treatment to prevent stains from penetrating through. Need help with a current stain? Check out our yacht cleaning tips here.
Pile refers to the way yarn is attached to the backing of the carpet or rug and also to the shape of the yarn. The following pile types are good for high traffic areas.
- Frieze has twisted yarn tufts, which curl at the carpet surface, hiding footprints and making it suitable for high traffic areas.
- Textured carpet is made from a cut pile of twisted yarn tufts, creating a surface that masks footprints.
- Loop pile, such as Berber, has evenly cut yarn. It generally lasts a long time in high-traffic areas.
Flooring maintenance and flexibility
Laminate is easy to maintain, without any need to oil, refinish or wax. It can resist fading due to sunlight, stain and dirt; laminate is not totally resistant to moisture and excessive amounts could lead to damage in its inner core, greatly affecting its overall performance.
A tile floor is considered to be one of the most flexible and long-lasting flooring types that can be ideal to use anywhere on the yacht, whether indoors or outdoors. Its durable surfaces which are resistant to almost all damaging elements can withstand the heavy traffic, wear, and even scratches. It is best used in bathrooms and kitchens as tiles are not just totally resistant to spills and moisture but also prevent growth of moulds and bacteria.
There is nothing like the look of a beautiful hardwood floor, which can add warmth and character to a yacht. However when it comes to maintenance, the trick is in prevention. Making sure it doesn’t soak up water for example and preventing furniture being dragged across it is essential. It is a durable surface and can endure a lot of traffic. However it is not very resistance to moisture and excessive sunlight can over time make the wood fade.
Looking for some flooring inspiration?
The floor is one of the largest surfaces in your home and transforming it into a beautiful, expressive space with a cohesive design is challenging, and while some superyachts express a more traditional style, the bold yacht owner may choose a more striking design. To help kick-start your creativity, here are a few unique flooring ideas for the unconventional yacht owner.
- Built-In Rugs: Instead of laying a rug over hardwood, why not install a hardwood perimeter around a section of carpet? Unlike area rugs, carpet will not slip and become crooked, nor will you have to lift and remove carpet to clean the floor underneath.
- Mosaic Flooring: Using tiles to make a mosaic is hardly a new practice, but taking the time to design your own mosaic will create a work of art unique to your yacht. Tile is available in a wide variety of shapes, colours, and textures and can be easily arranged in striking geometric patterns.
- Painted Flooring: A painted area of hardwood can really put your own stamp on a room. Much like the mosaic this art will create a floor completely unique to a yacht.
Finding the right flooring for your yacht can be a complex process of choosing the best colours, textures and materials to suit your style however a good choice can complement your yacht for years to come.