Porphyry floors

Porphyry outdoor paving in Vicenza and Verona

Are you looking for information on porphyry? Do you want to lay an external floor at your house and need advice on porphyry? You are on the right page: we have been supplying and laying porphyry in Vicenza and Verona for more than 50 years, and on this page we have gathered our experience and knowledge on this subject. 
Here are the topics we will cover on this page:

 

Outdoor porphyry flooring in Colognola ai Colli

Outdoor paving using porphyry cubes laid in parallel rows on the diagonal in a house in Colognola ai Colli (Verona).

Porphyry: a house in Verona

What is porphyry?

The eruption took place about 280 million years ago: over thousands of years, an enormous volcano unleashed a sequence of lava flows that covered a vast area near Trento. 

As the magma cooled, it gave rise to the layers of porphyry that we can still see today in the quarries of Trentino. 

cava di porfido

Porphyry is an extraordinary material, cast and shaped in the bowels of the earth, with such hardness and strength that it was used as a symbol of eternity in classical sculptures. 
We have dedicated an in-depth study to the history of porphyry in which you can find out who the famous leader was who wanted a porphyry sarcophagus, how porphyry was extracted and worked in the past and today, and discover which types were most common and which are the most used today: 

history, extraction, processing and characteristics of porphyry

Uncut and squared porphyry in Vicenza

A house from the 1970s needed to rethink its outdoor spaces: we integrated the old porphyry paving and modernised the paths. And here is the final result:

renovated outdoor spaces in vicenza

Types of porphyry for floors

Porphyry is not extracted by sawing the mountain into blocks, as is done with marble, but is mined at the base so that the slabs fall out, which are then sorted. This method of quarrying produces slabs of various thicknesses and shapes that give rise to different types of paving material.

Porphyry for floors: types

Is porphyry suitable for outdoor paving? 

In order for a material to be considered suitable for outdoor paving, it must have certain basic characteristics:

  • the surface must be non-slip
  • The material must have low absorbency and be frost resistant.
  • the pavement must be resistant to mechanical stress (passage of cars, vans, etc.).

The hardness of porphyry, its resistance and the non-slip surface make it an ideal outdoor floor covering. This is due to the way it originated and the technique used to extract it. Its 'hollow split' surface does not require processing and is already naturally non-slip. But thanks to its volcanic origin, it does not absorb and therefore resists frost. In addition, porphyry is not damaged if it is sprinkled with de-icing salt (which is something that damages almost all other natural stones).

In this article we explain what these success factors are that are making it one of the most popular products in the world (from Japan to the USA) in the field of outdoor paving:

why use porphyry in outdoor paving?

As you will see in the article, we have also tried to answer the questions we most frequently receive about this material.
One of the questions we are asked most often is, for example...

Outdoor porphyry flooring in Vicenza

In this realisation we used square porphyry with different sealing, combined with Goya stone.

Discover the realisation:

Porphyry and goya stone outdoor paving in Vicenza

How much does a porphyry floor cost? 

I imagine that you want to have at least an idea of how much an external porphyry floor will cost, including laying. We will try to satisfy this curiosity, although I hope you will understand that the price can only be an indication. 

There are many factors that affect the cost of an outdoor paving: issues such as slopes, thicknesses, the presence of grates, drains and manholes must be managed.
Just to give an example: 100 metres in a square courtyard (easy) will cost LESS than the same 100 metres of porphyry but laid in a one-metre wide pavement, perhaps full of seals and grates.  
Then you have to consider the perimeter elements, the total thickness to be filled, the type of grouting, the amount of joints... 

But we understand that it is important for you to have some indications, so we give you a range of prices that our customers usually spend for a floor: 

Uncut porphyry flooring (or irregular porphyry slabs) including laying, bedding, grouting, joints etc. = 50 to 60 euros per square metre
► Flooring in cube tiles laid in radial pattern (contrasting arches) including laying, bedding, grouting and joints = 75 to 80 euros per square metre
Squared porphyry tile flooring, including laying, bedding, grouting and joints, again from 75 to 85 euros per square metre: this depends on the size of the squared tiles chosen and any presence of perimeter borders or bands.

To these prices must be added the cost of any decorations or inserts in other materials in the flooring.

Porphyry for a royal outdoor floor in Vicenza

Outdoor porphyry, cobblestone and marble flooring, a regal result achieved in Vicenza.

Discover the project and see more:

square porphyry and cobblestone driveway in Vicenza

How to lay a porphyry floor? 

We have dealt with this topic in several articles, for example this one:
how to lay porphyry cubes


We also explain how to comply with the recently published Uni standard:designing and laying porphyry according to Uni standard 11714


Finally, we also talk about how to grout porphyry, explaining the new grouting method using Mapei resin. We talk about it here:
grouting porphyry with resin: advantages and costs

Squared porphyry for exteriors in Vicenza

We designed and laid the porphyry outdoor paving for the new headquarters of the Bassano Medical Centre.

Discover the realisation:

Porphyry outdoor paving: the cmr of Bassano 

Porphyry for floors: achievements and photos

In addition to the photos that you will find in the articles and in the gallery at the bottom of the page, if you come to visit us we will be happy to point out some work carried out here in the area and take you to visit the works, so you can

see how we worked live;
ask our customers how they got on with us.

Please bear in mind that in order to provide a high level of quality and the necessary ongoing assistance to the site, we have set ourselves the task of operating only in the provinces of Vicenza and Verona, so if you live in another province, we are reluctant to tell you but... we cannot serve you. 

In that case, however, you can continue to read the content that we have included on this site to share our experiences (and also our mistakes), ideas and suggestions to help you make the most of your home. If you have the patience to read the articles you will be able to appreciate even more this beautiful material, perfect for outdoor paving.

Porphyry in 3 formats in an outdoor driveway in San Bonifacio

Porphyry paving outside the house and outbuilding

Not only outdoor floors, but also porphyry stairs

Decorated porphyry outdoor floor

Squared porphyry and uncut porphyry external pavement

Before, during installation and after completion of external floors

From porphyry quarries to outdoor paving in Vicenza and Verona

Approfondimenti