Baldosas de Terrazzo: Terrazzo Tile

I know that I had seen Terrazzo before moving to Andalucía. It’s the material that the Hollywood walk of fame is made of. It’s a classic flooring material, and has roots in ancient Egyptian architecture, though according to Wikipedia it started its rise in popularity in 15th century Italy. According to and, it has in the last decade seen a real resurgence in popularity as both a material for building, and as inspiration for graphic treatments on all sorts of products.

Terrazzo tile is essentially a human-made stone tile that suspends crushed pieces of hard stone (like granite, quartz or marble) in some sort of cement or chemical binder (see the Wikipedia article for more details). It can be made in a factory as individual tiles, or poured in place depending on the required application.

It turns out that Terrazzo is historically an incredibly popular material for flooring in the Pueblo where I live. It is also the main material for the facades throughout the town. The color combinations that are possible with this material make for an amazing variety in looks for the various homes and buildings that have this as a facade. According to one local business person, in the 1980s nearly the whole town facades were done in Terrazzo. It’s not clear to me if that was done as a government led initiative or required practice, or if it was just an interesting coincidence that the whole town decided to record their buildings in this material.

Living in Andalucía tile is an ever present reminder of the long history of this region. Terrazzo isn’t intricate Moorish tile, however there is something fascinating in the patterns that the crushed stone makes as it is suspended in the cement. There is a perhaps a hint of, or illusion to, the islamic tile that once dominated this area of the world and continues to inform the decorations of the area.