The title image features Beacon Hill Flagstone pavers.
Bluestone is a wonderful material much loved for its uniqueness and rich character. It’s a popular patio material that works well with any architectural style, but it does come with some shortcomings. Fortunately, there are great alternatives to achieve the best of what bluestone has to offer. Here are four concrete paver options for where you’d usually use bluestone in Columbia, PA.
Related Read: Choosing the Best Paving Materials – Concrete Pavers vs. Stamped Concrete
Exploring Bluestone-Like Pavers
Some homeowners consider bluestone a must-have. Each stone is completely unique. Its dramatic steel blue color can include veins or shades of gray, brown, tan, or other colors. If one stone is beautiful, an entire bluestone patio is spectacular.
While its beauty is undeniable, you may run into a few challenges if you choose bluestone for your outdoor living spaces. Two of the most prominent shortcomings are that bluestone can become quite slippery when wet and hot to the touch if it’s used in a sunny location. Bluestone is a relatively porous sedimentary stone with many layers. Unsealed, it will absorb moisture and the freeze-thaw cycle can cause spalling (flaking) along its many layers. On the surface, this can lead to chipping and an uneven surface that becomes a tripping hazard. Sealing bluestone must be done carefully, including the sides and the bottom. Otherwise, water will infiltrate it, and the stone will spall, and over time your patio will start to look shabby and unkempt.
Bluestone alternatives give you the look of bluestone (especially if you use some of our design tips below), without the shortcomings.
Bluestone Alternatives from Unilock
For smaller spaces, consider Treo Premier pavers. The random bundle contains 9” x 14” rectangles, 9” x 9” squares, and 4.5” x 9” rectangles. It’s also available individually as a 4.5” x 9” rectangle, which is perfect for edging and accents, or for use on driveways. Of the eight available colors, New York Blend, Fossil, Almond Grove, and Steel Mountain are closest to bluestone.
If you have two, three, or all four of these colors mixed onsite, you can achieve the most random and natural look of bluestone (since even stones from the same quarry and same batch can vary dramatically in color).
For larger spaces, Beacon Hill Flagstone gives you the same beautiful natural bluestone texture with beveled edges, but in a larger format than Treo. For an even more expansive look, an XL rectangle is now available. Of the six available colors, Almond Grove, New York Blend, Fossil, and Steel Mountain colors are the closest to bluestone. As with Treo pavers, you can install them individually, or for a more random look, opt for blending several colors onsite.
With Bristol Valley pavers, you get three realistic blended colors including Steel Mountain and New York Blend (the closest to bluestone). These realistic colors give you the appeal of bluestone in a more modern style with a zero bevel edge. Choose from a variety of laying patterns using the random bundle of three shapes/sizes, or use the XL size for a more expansive look. Bristol Valley is popular on patios and pool decks thanks to EasyClean stain resistance, which makes for carefree outdoor living.
For the most realistic bluestone look, you can’t go wrong with Richcliff pavers. Reala Technology uses casts from real flagstones, not only for an authentic texture but no repeating patterns. Choose Smoke Shale and Dawn Mist to achieve an authentic bluestone look. You could also add Pebble Taupe to add warmth to your patio. Richcliff pavers can be ideal for all applications around the home: your driveway (when utilizing the Random Bundle), patio, entry, walkway, and pool deck.