How to select the right kind of wood finishes for your next hotel project.
You’re almost done with development on your dream hotel; all that’s left is the finishing touch. Unfortunately, “almost done” is easier said than done. If your finishing touch is wood, you’ll need to decide: what type of wood, what desired finish, if it will be on the interior or exterior of the property, what will be the method of application, and which of the many types of wood product you will decide to pursue?
Besides understanding the differences between each wood product, you’ll want to know how each wood product fits best with your particular commercial project. Ultimately, it may take a bit of trial and error on your part. There is no one perfect wood look for all types of projects. But first, it’s best to understand the advantages and disadvantages of each type of wood to ultimately determine which is the best for your hotel project.
Medium-density fibreboard (MDF) wood product
MDF is an engineered wood product similar to particle board, though a bit denser and more durable. It’s composed of small wood fibers, so there are no visible knots, rings, or indents. You are able to purchase MDF in different thickness levels based on what you need for your project. Other advantages include:
- More affordable than plywood
- Smooth surface, no voids or splinters
- Ability to create decorative, unique edges
- Easy to paint and cut for detailed design
On the other hand, MDF is not water-resistant and will soak up water and other liquids like a sponge and morph, unless it is well sealed. MDF is also very heavy, which can make it difficult to work with, and it cannot be stained.
Plywood advantages and disadvantages
Plywood is very diverse. It can come in different thicknesses, different grades, and in various wood species, like oak and maple. Advantages of plywood include:
- Less susceptible to water damage than MDF
- It’s stainable, making it ideal for cabinets or tabletops
- Strong building material
While it can sustain water damager better than MDF, it is also more expensive. And as you move higher up in grade, or the more special the wood species, the more expensive it can become. Plywood is also known to splinter on the edges when it’s cut, making it more difficult to cut detailed designs, whereas MDF is much smoother and easier to customize.
Particle board wood product
Particle board is a low-density fibreboard (LDF) and chipboard manufactured from wood chips, sawmill shavings, and sawdust. The advantages of particle board include:
- Ideal for ready-made furniture
But affordability comes at a price. Particle board is not very durable and cannot support heavy loads. It morphs or discolors in damp environments and is not as eco-friendly as other wood products.
Types of hardwood
If you want hardwood flooring to be part of your hotel project, you’ll have your fair share of options. The most common wood floor used in North America is oak, likely due to the fact that it is resistant to dents and scratches. Other hardwood flooring options include:
- Mahogany: Highly durable and water-resistant, with a classic look and deep coloring
- Lyptus: Harder than oak and easy to finish with a similar look of mahogany at a more affordable price
- Ashwood: light-colored but tough, hard, and one of the more cost-effective hardwoods·
- Hickory: extremely hard exterior that can lend itself to most designs
- Cherry: easy to maintain, great finish, durable, and darkens with age
- Walnut: strong, durable, shiny, and one of the more higher-end hardwoods
- Rosewood: popular for furniture making with a unique fragrance and grain patterns
- Maple: highly durable, popular, but doesn’t absorb stains very well
Choosing the right wood for your commercial project
The main differences between grades of wood come down to the number of knotholes. The amount of defects determines the wood’s grade, as does the type or grade of adhesive. For the average eye, much of the evaluations that go into determining the level of a wood product would be unnoticeable. But when it comes to adding the finishing touch – the right wood and wood look can be a defining moment in your project’s completion.
At Beachwood Custom, we understand that the purchasing, manufacturing, and developing of each type of material that goes into your project will ultimately define your hotel. Our passion is providing exemplary service to our hotel customers with a combined 100+ years of international experience. We travel the world in search of the top-quality furniture and finishes to provide the best advice and guidance for your hotel’s development. Let us help you provide the best custom solutions for your boutique or premier hotel by contacting us today.