Cosentino, the global leader in natural stone, quartz, and recycled surfacing, is opening a Cosentino Center in San Diego. Officially kicking off with a reception for industry leaders from 6-9 p.m., Thursday, March 15, the new San Diego center will focus on enhancing the kitchen and bath design experience for architects, designers, fabricators, distributors and consumers. The opening also is part of an overall plan to continuously expand the company’s presence in the U.S. market in the next few years and marks the second center in California. The Cosentino Center concept already is a proven and essential fixture in Europe, where Cosentino has its global headquarters. More than a showroom, the Cosentino Center is designed to support, promote, and educate architects and designers by integrating distribution facilities with product display areas, meeting spaces for designers to bring clients, classrooms for continuing education, and fully functioning kitchens and event space for demonstrations. The centers create an interactive environment for architects, designers, distributors, and fabricators to view the latest products and design trends, earn continuing education credits, attend expert seminars, and receive training and on new production techniques and innovations. To welcome San Diego architects and designers, Cosentino will partner with the American Institute of Architects (AIA) to offer an continuing education course on hard surfacing options that will take place on the night of the grand opening, starting at 5 p.m. The educational tour will allow designers to experience raw materials first-hand and learn how they are transformed into finished products. The course also will cover a range of topics such as product sustainability and environmental impact. “San Diego is the seventh Cosentino Center to open, and marks the first center opening in 2012,” said Lorenzo Marquez, VP of Marketing for Cosentino. “With such a strong stone industry in California, we knew opening another center here was crucial to meeting the growing demand. Having a presence in San Diego marks significant progress in our plans to expand in North America, especially on the West Coast. We’re confident this showroom will serve as a dynamic and inspirational space for our visitors, where they can experience the entire array of our collections first-hand.” The San Diego Cosentino Center includes more than 25,000 square feet of warehouse and distribution space and a 3,400 square-foot state-of-the-art showroom. Visitors to the San Diego center will be able to explore and engage in all aspects of the kitchen and bath experience — from material and color section to specification and fabrication. It will include a comprehensive showcase of the full portfolio of Cosentino brands, including: Silestone Natural Quartz; ECO by Cosentino recycled surfaces; SenSa® Granite; Scalea Natural Stone; Marlique™ Marble; MURO™ Mosaics; and the Prexury™ Collection, a semi-precious stone line handmade by expert craftsmen. To meet increasing demand for its products, Cosentino opened its first Center in Anaheim, CA in September 2010 and quickly followed with showrooms in Phoenix, San Francisco, Dallas, Atlanta, Chicago and Orlando. Additionally, nine more centers are planned to open in 2012 including Charlotte, Washington D.C., Cincinnati, San Francisco, Minneapolis, Austin, Portland, St. Louis and Denver. “As Cosentino’s presence continues to grow in North America, it's imperative to provide the resources and support that architects and designers need to grow their businesses and be successful," Marquez said. "That goal is the guiding vision behind the Cosentino Center concept.” The grand opening of the San Diego Cosentino Center will take place on Thursday, March 15 from 6-9 p.m. with nearly 200 architects, designers, fabricators and industry leaders expected to attend. The San Diego Cosentino Center is located at 9020 Activity Road- Suite C, San Diego, California, 92126. It’s open to design trade professionals and consumers from Monday - Friday, 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. and Saturday 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. or by appointment. Phone: (760) 741 - 8000.