Above Image: The sleek new Ann Sacks at the San Francisco Design Center. All photos by Vivian Johnson, courtesy of Ann Sacks.
One can’t fault designers for doing a double take when they first set foot inside the new Ann Sacks showroom. After all, the luxury tile and stone purveyor now occupies a 5,500-square-foot space—flooded with natural light, courtesy of 18-foot mullioned windows—where the breadth of offerings immediately impresses. Every Ann Sacks collection, roughly 180 in total, is on display. Beyond the myriad samples and room vignettes, floor-to-ceiling piers are sheathed in marble, highlighting the company’s natural stones. “People walk in, look around, and sometimes forget where they are,” says Tiffany Wheat, the western regional sales manager for Ann Sacks. “What we hear a lot is ‘jaw-dropping.’”
An urbane kitchen reaches new heights in the loft-like space. Tiles are Modern Rectangle in White Shimmer and Catia Black (wall); Bianco Montcarte (island); and Nero Marquina (countertop)
With an emphasis on product range and customer service, the priority is clear: provide interior designers and homeowners with an inspiring venue where they can comfortably conjure the kitchens and baths of their dreams. To that end, the showroom houses the Ann Sacks Design Studio, appointed with generously sized Calacatta Zebrino–topped worktables. Nearby are drawers filled with 23-by-51-inch floor pads and magnetic boards that allow clients to better visualize the way their imagined combinations will appear in a room.
And there’s another noteworthy amenity. “The sample room used to be buried in the back,” says Wheat. “Design consultants had to leave a client to pull a sample, which impacted the creative flow.” Now samples are part of the Design Studio concept.
While the design industry has been challenged by the ongoing supply-chain disruptions, many of the tiles at Ann Sacks are readily available: 60 percent are in stock, and 40 percent are made to order. “It’s not just, ‘Yes, we have a three-by-six in white,’” says Wheat. “The in-stock options that we have are tremendous. There’s a ton of variety.”
Among the tiles that can ship in just a week or two are those that make up the new Shaye collection, which evokes the Old World art form of marbled paper. “It’s got a lot of movement,” says Wheat of the exquisite motif that swirls two hues together (such as white and blue or white and light gray). Marbleizing paper by hand dates back centuries, and Florentine artisans continue the tradition to this day. Shaye translates the craft to porcelain, including four marbled and five standard field tiles that can grace walls and floors, indoors and out.
These days, Wheat observes, it’s not uncommon for designers and clients—jointly or individually—to spend half a day in the showroom. “They can plug in their phone or laptop and hunker down here,” she says. “Tile and stone can take a lot of time and thought, so we encourage it.”
All collections available through annsacks.com