Cuban Tiles

Cuban tiles, as they are known in the United States, are really just encaustic tile made of cement. Encaustic refers to the fact that the patterns or figures on them are produced as part of the material, not applied or painted on. Encaustic tiles are mostly made of clay or cement (as with Cuban tiles). The great part about this is that they last forever. Even if the tile gets worn down from a lot of traffic or chipped somehow, the pattern remains the same hiding the damage!
A traditional floor detail of cement Cuban tiles from Luxetile
They also happen to be a green material as most are done with natural pigments in the mix and won't off-gas or leach dangerous toxins. I love all of the pattern and color these provide! Aren't they fun?
kitchen floor tiles in Cuba from the book 'Inside Havana' -a great book with a link on my sidebar to buy if you're interested.
I worry that the cement would be hard on your feet but you could also use them as a backsplash in kitchens or baths or as wainscotting around a room with wood flooring. Any Cuban interior isn't complete without them. Wouldn't they be great in a hallway? Especially in a mediterranean style house!
A very pretty floor layout from Villa Lagoon
I like that the patterns range from Venetian, Victorian to very modern and in all sorts of colors so they can be used in any style of interior. Where would you use them?
Interior of Cuban Barbershop from Inside Havana
For a great slideshow of a bunch of different historical uses of tile in Cuba, visit El Nuevo Herald
Some sources for Cuban tiles that I could find online are below, no this isn't a paid advertisement or endorsement! I don't think they're available at your local home depot!
Villa Lagoon Tiles
image at top of post from El Neuvo Herald slidehow

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