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Ethanol fireplaces: the simple, no-fuss option

Ethanol Fireplace

Adding a fireplace to a room creates a new focal point that exudes comfort and warmth. But the hurdle of installation is often thought to be prohibitive. Not so with an ethanol fireplace! This type of fireplace is a relatively simple construction that requires no chimney and can be installed by simply placing it in the desired location. In fact, the simplicity doesn’t end there; once installed, an ethanol fireplace is easy to operate and maintenance is a breeze.

How does it work?

An ethanol fireplace generates heat and flames through burning ethanol - an eco-friendly fuel derived from corn. Simply pour ethanol fuel into the burner then ignite it with a long lighter or flick the switch. Ethanol produces no soot or ashes when it burns, hence no need for a flue or chimney. And there is little need for ventilation as the flames are clean.

How do I clean and maintain my fireplace?

Cleaning an ethanol fireplace is simple. No need to sweep up piles of ashes or scrub thick layers of soot. As long as you follow these basic rules, you’ll be able to maintain its appearance and functionality for many years.

1.     Wipe away soot

When your fireplace is cool, use a damp soft, lint-free cloth to wipe the back of the fireplace. This should remove any soot that has gathered. Use distilled water to ensure you leave no marks or try a mild glass cleaner. Depending on how often you use your fireplace, you may need to do this once a week or once a month.

2. Clean the burner

Take the burner out of the body of the fireplace, drain the fuel and clean the burner with a soft cloth, warm water and mild soap. If you have a sponge-style burner insert, use a dry cloth to wipe away the dust.

 3. Polish to a shine

Use stainless steel polish on your burner for extra shine. Ensure you scrub with the grain and use a basic soft sponge. Once fully cleaned and dry, place the burner back into the fireplace and refill with fuel.

Extra top tips:

·         Never submerse your burner under water.

·         Never use hard abrasives to clean the fireplace.

·         Mop up fuel spills as soon as they happen to prevent discoloration of the steel.

The simple no-fuss option

If you’re looking for an easy way to add a warming glow to a room, then an ethanol fireplace may well be the answer. Ultra simple to install and maintain, it can provide a flickering natural beauty that can be enjoyed by you and your family for years.

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Popular interior improvements for home sellers

Although it’s difficult to know which home improvements help a house sell faster, and for top-dollar, there are some that offer a better return than others. If you’re thinking of selling in the near future, it would be wise to evaluate any structural or decor changes with a view to future value as well as present appeal.

Some renovations are more appropriate than others. For example, look to the floor first. Welcome guests as they step into your home with natural stone or a dramatic tile floor that’s as beautiful as it is easy care. It’s a “value added” feature that will impress prospective buyers!


Look to the Kitchen

Buyers want kitchens that are bright and happy spaces, filled with great appliances, attractive countertops, and cabinets with abundant storage. You may replace your cabinets, or you may brighten and refinish old wood, repaint cabinet doors and add new hardware. If the style is outdated but the boxes are in good shape, consider replacing the doors, something a professional contractor can easily do.

A lot of sellers opt to replace outdated laminate countertops with a solid surface, either natural stone or a modern composite, for a trendy look. Add a shiny new sink with a modern stainless faucet/sprayer combination to immediately vault your kitchen into the 21st Century of style. Display pots of herbs on the windowsill!

Repaint the walls, replace vinyl flooring with trendy new wood floors, natural stone or oversized ceramic tile. Modern engineered wood is perfectly suited for kitchen use and will look beautiful for years to come. However, your newly refurbished kitchen might be tempting enough to make you change your mind about moving!


Whole House Improvements

If you’ve lived in a home for a number of years, it is easy to overlook small faults. Try to walk through each room with new eyes, or ask a trusted friend to point our areas that need attention. They might suggest you repaint some walls or even entire rooms. They also might recommend you lighten up your window treatments, or replace older mini-blinds with more modern wide-slat style, or switch to adjustable interior shutters that allow light as well as privacy.

Replacing round brass doorknobs with more modern stainless or oil rubbed bronze levers and updating a dining room chandelier with a contemporary pendant will make a world of difference.

It’s all about adding style without spending too much and creating a backdrop to stimulate a buyer’s imagination. The best advice is to update without stamping your own personality on each room. Neutral backgrounds are adaptable, but don’t overdo the “plain and simple” approach. Study online decorating sites and visit local paint stores and design centers for ideas.

Freshening up your home’s decor may take some thought, but it is by no means an impossible task!


Ryan Tollefsen is the founder and team leader of Unity Home Group. Ryan specializes in negotiating offers, marketing, managing the team, setting goals and achieving them. 

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Say anything you want with wood home accents

So, wood’s been around as long as, well…as long as anything on the planet.

And it’s been an essential element of design for as long as “design” has been a concept. Our parents, grandparents, and great-grandparents all probably utilized wood design in some way.

Few can contest the beauty of an expertly finished wood floor or deny the handsomeness of the original wood trim found in older homes.

But is that where it ends for wood? Is it only for floors and fans of old-fashioned or rustic design styles?

Absolutely not. In fact, we absolutely love reclaimed wood walls:



But just by changing the wood species, arrangement and finish, look what else a wood wall can say:


This slatted wood wall’s warm, modern feel is a far cry from the homespun coolness of the previous photo, proving wood has a lot more up its sleeve than many folks realize.

Luckily, professional designers are switched on to wood and are constantly mining its spectrum of expression to say all kinds of fascinating things, like this:

Or this:


As you can see, there is nothing run-of-the-mill about these looks. Now, try to envisage the previous two images without the wood. Can you imagine how much more uniform, chilly and, dare we say, dull these rooms would be?

So, we know wood looks fantastic on floors and walls—but what about ceilings?


This magnificent contemporary ceiling shows that cedar is meant for more than just grandma’s hope chest, and it pairs beautifully with the Brazilian cherry wood flooring.


Faded antique oak barn wood and faux-finished heart pine trusses lend this vaulted ceiling a lovely, graceful, nostalgic quality.


Of course, reclaimed wood isn’t just for rustic looks, as this modern space charmingly demonstrates, while also proving you don’t have to match ceiling to floor wood tones to achieve an ingenious effect.

Now let’s switch gears and talk about trim. Remember when we mentioned the timeless beauty of the original wood trim sometimes found in older homes? Yep, original or not, it’s always going to be a winning look:

But it doesn’t have to be traditional to work . . .


From the zebrawood fireplace panels to the honey-stained built-in shelving, this eclectic sitting room oozes sophistication.


And this organic-modern shiplap cedar entryway puts this foyer’s cool quotient through the roof.

In light of the evidence presented, we believe it’s safe to say we’ve made our case: wood endures as an ageless, highly versatile, inherently beautiful element of design that translates superbly in virtually any design style.

And for those who adore wood and like it to be much more than an accent piece:


Whether you’re remodeling or just thinking of adding a few accent pieces, the best thing about designing with wood is the vast scope of choice it affords. If you have questions, from how to create breathtaking ceilings with simple wood flooring to what types of grains make for stunning wall panels to which stains will give you the look you’ve been longing for, Primera’s team of design professionals is ready and waiting for you to visit or call.

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The primera difference: why buy from us?

It’s true—you have dozens of choices when it comes to interior designers and product options. And maybe you’re the type of person who values variety, so you don’t mind visiting more than one store to find the right look. Or the right products. Or the right prices. Or the right designers, project managers, installers, etc.

But what if we told you that you could find all of that, in one extraordinary place, without sacrifice? It doesn’t matter where your tastes lie – traditional, modern, country, contemporary, coastal, western, or eclectic, you will be able to find it at Primera.



Whether you’re looking for flooring, cabinetry, countertops, backsplashes, fixtures or window treatments, Primera has every material and style you can imagine.


And though the stunning showrooms are renowned for their immense array of design and product choices, if you can’t find your perfect creative fit here, you’re certain to find it in one of our catalogs.


Our Brands and Materials

Primera offers only the finest products and materials from the top brands in the U.S., which means that all of our product collections are state-of-the-art in quality, at the cutting edge of design and, since many of our suppliers roam the globe looking for inspiration, made from the most beautiful and unique materials in the world. 


For the latest looks in porcelain stoneware, glazed ceramic and glass, Marazzi never disappoints. Sold in over 130 countries, the brand truly boasts world-class artistry and craftsmanship.

Pictured is Marazzi’s “Lounge14” tile in “Martini” on the floor with “Martini and Sidecar” decorative inlay on the wall.



Ranked #1 by Floor Covering News, Floor Covering Weekly, and Floor Focus, Shaw is not only the world’s largest carpet manufacturer, but is also an excellent source for hardwood, laminate, tile, stone and vinyl.

And Shaw vinyl isn’t your grandmother’s vinyl. Take a look at this “Luxury Vinyl Plank” in “Coconut Milk,” which brings a sophisticated, yet natural look to a space normally off-limits to wood.


Arizona Tile


Photo by Kitchen Design ConceptsBrowse transitional bathroom ideas

When it comes to gorgeous hard surfaces, Arizona Tile’s hard to beat. Offering everything from granite to soapstone, mosaic to stack, their collections are almost dizzying in their variety.

This “H-Line” series subway tile in “Denim Glossy” is as functional and durable as it is coolly inviting.



KraftMaid cabinets aren’t just beautiful; they’re semi-custom, which means you get a built-to-order, hand-assembled product without paying the steep prices of fully customized cabinetry. All KraftMaid cabinets go through a “Durakraft Plus” four-part finishing system, which means they’ll look and feel as good in 20 years as the day you had them installed.

These KraftMaid cabinets in “Sage and Mushroom with Cocoa Glaze” give this traditional kitchen a calm and collected, yet distinctive, quality.



One of the largest independent stone and porcelain tile importers in the U.S., Bedrosians is known for exquisite stone slab countertops, as well as elegantly functional tile made from porcelain, ceramic or stone.

Bedrosians “Sequel Quartz” in “Statuario” features the veined look of marble and adds classical charm to this alabaster kitchen.



A subsidiary of Mohawk, Daltile manufactures over 700 million square feet of durable, beautiful floor and wall coverings a year, including quarry, mosaic, glazed porcelain, ceramic, natural stone and recycled tile.

This “City View” porcelain tile backsplash in “Skyline Gray” gives this contemporary kitchen a hip, cosmopolitan vibe.


So, Primera has all the greatest brands and materials, but what about everything else?

Primera isn’t only a one-stop-shop for materials, it’s also the only place you need to go for innovative, expert design and professional, top-notch installation. We are with you every step of the way, from mapping out your vision to helping you choose just the right components, from ordering to delivery and installation; we’re not through until the job has been completed flawlessly and to your utmost satisfaction.

And because our buying power is so extensive, our prices are competitive, so you’re not going to pay more for the amazing variety, quality and service that you won’t find anywhere else. Whether you’re a homeowner, designer, contractor or builder, give us a call and experience Primera difference for yourself.

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March 2017 design trends: wall beds, backsplashes, 3d tiles, and more!



What’s Behind These Walls?


Need a place for guests, but don’t have the room? Consider a space-saving wall bed.


Sustainable and Stylish

Boulder, CO Homes

Interested in sustainable living? Recycled wood is a responsibly sourced material that gives a rustic feel to any room.


Make a Splash!


A glass sheet backsplash on the wall behind your stove gives a modern touch to your kitchen.


Go Deep…

Knobhill  House

Looking to add more depth to your bathroom? 3-D tiles are a great way to add interest with a monochromatic coastal scheme.


Homework Station


Instead of putting a desk in your children’s room, choose a hallway, loft or corner of a family room and turn it into a dedicated homework station.


Photos provided by Houzz.

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Countertops: how to find your home's match


Looking to really reinvent your kitchen? It is cheaper, quicker, and easier to create a new impression by simply updating the countertops rather than the whole kitchen. With so many styles, materials, and brands to choose from, the transformation is both exciting and maybe even a bit overwhelming. Here are several considerations to help you narrow down your choices when it comes to choosing the perfect countertops for your home:


Material: Maintenance and Durability


Countertops come in a wide variety of materials, including natural stone, engineered stone, granite, vetrazzo, and semi-precious. Believe it or not, your lifestyle dictates the best material to use. If you are an avid cook, for example, a harder surface is ideal—whereas a family home will benefit from a stain-resistant, durable material.

If durability is your top priority, granite is your best option. Available in a wide variety of colors, granite can even be heat or scratch resistant; Arizona Tile is a great resource with over 70 beautiful granite variations to choose from.



The least exciting, but perhaps most important, thing to consider when updating or installing countertops is your budget. Luckily, no matter how much or little you can spend, there are still plenty of options out there. While granite is known for its durability, it’s not the most affordable material. However, laminate, stainless steel, and tile come in a wide-variety of beautiful and affordable options.




Whether you’re looking to warm up your kitchen or add a chic accent to your bathroom, the color of your countertop can give you the appeal you’re looking for. From white to black to any shade in between, there are plenty of color choices.

Natural stone, like quartz, is a hugely popular choice with many options and a unique aesthetic. But it’s important to remember that these natural stone materials are softer than granite and require more maintenance. Cactus Stone has a variety of stunning colors in quartz that can brighten up any kitchen or bathroom.

One of the downfalls of having so many different amazing brands and materials to choose from when it comes to your countertops is narrowing down your choices. This is where Primera can come in to assist you with finding that perfect countertop for you and ensuring it is installed perfectly—on time and within budget. Our experts know the brands we offer inside and out, helping you in making the best choice.


Schedule an appointment today to find out about the best countertop options for your kitchen or bathroom.

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Primera is proud to officially announce the launch of its commercial division

After increasing interest and demand, Primera is proud to announce the official launch of its commercial division, offering design and installation expertise for all commercial contractor needs.

Primera Commercial Design and Installation
Primera understands how the interior design features of a building immensely impact its energy and atmosphere. The design and materials used for flooring and backsplashes act as a big first impression. In fact, the interior of your commercial building should represent your unique establishment, which is what makes Primera’s commercial work so impressive.

On Time and Within Budget
Your commercial design project should not only be tasteful and illustrative of your business, but it should also be completed on time, within budget, and with a team of experienced designers and installers who you sincerely trust.

From small tenant improvements to million-dollar contracts, no commercial design project is too small or large for Primera. Primera is delighted to work with a wide variety of commercial contractors, including:

  • Hotels
  • Restaurants
  • Resorts
  • Casinos
  • Educational institutions
  • Retail businesses and shopping centers
  • Health care establishments
  • Office buildings
  • Athletic facilities

Primera’s Portfolio of Commercial Work
Although the commercial division is new, Primera’s work with commercial contractors is not. With an impressive portfolio and a highly experienced team, Primera works with each contractor to understand the individual needs and character of the business. Some of the high-profile projects successfully completed by Primera include:

  • The Kimpton Hotel in downtown Phoenix, Arizona
  • Twin Arrows Casino in Flagstaff, Arizona
  • The Arizona Cardinals Training Facility in Tempe, Arizona
  • The Chicago Cubs Training Facility in Mesa, Arizona

Each design is unique to the establishment and its atmosphere. From flooring to stonework, the selected materials are always of brilliant quality and installed with meticulous care—within budget and on time.

What Makes Primera Different
It’s true, Primera’s performance delivers glowing reviews; yet it is the relationship with its clients that makes Primera truly different from any other commercial designers and installers.

From the initial design to the final day of installation, Primera continually proves a dedication to service and delivery; in fact, the President of Primera’s commercial division, Jim Miller, is always available and typically on-site throughout the duration each project.

Jim Miller: The President of Our Commercial Division
Primera is very fortunate to have Jim Miller as the President of its commercial division. With years of experience in all aspects of commercial design, Jim is responsive, continually present, and deeply committed to each project. The relationships built are solid, being founded on trust and satisfaction.

For more information regarding Primera’s commercial division, contact Jim Miller today.

Jim Miller
President – Commercial Division
So. Cal/New Mexico
1311 W. 21st Street
Tempe, AZ 85282
P: 480-829-0054 Ext 600 C: 602-725-1424 F: 480-829-8598

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High Contrast

design trends

High contrast patterns and geometric designs add interest to a room and can even compliment small spaces.

Ahoy There!

design tips

Navy and white – the now-trending preppy color combo – transforms your space into a nautical and elegant oasis.

White-Washed Elegance

design tips3

White is Benjamin Moore’s color of the year for good reason – white-washed walls leave your space refreshed, bright and beautiful.

Rustic and Welcoming

design tips4

This year’s design trends are all about texture. Hand-hewn beams and rustic floors give rooms a warm, welcoming glow.


design tips5

The 1960s are making a comeback with Mid-Century Modern’s clean, simple lines and thoughtful craftsmanship.


Image Credits:

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Primera announces the appointment of francis maasland

Primera is delighted to welcome Francis Maasland as its Corporate Director of Purchasing.

Francis was born and raised in Amsterdam but relocated to New York to join his family’s home restoration and remodelling business in his early career.  Having moved multiple times throughout the US to take advantage of new career opportunities, Francis settled in Arizona in 1998.


His career has spanned a wealth of operational, sales and design roles, which lead to his specialization in purchasing management over the last fourteen years.  In these varied roles, he has worked with both home builders and their suppliers and now Francis brings his vast experience and extensive knowledge to Primera.

In his new role as Corporate Director of Purchasing, based at Primera’s headquarters in Tempe, AZ, Francis will have responsibility for Primera’s purchasing strategy, purchasing budget and procurement management.

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Design trends: rose quartz, mustard yellows and walnut and marble countertops


Perfection in Pink

Pantone declared Rose Quartz one of its two colors of the year for 2016. The pale pink color goes beautifully with neutral grays and whites.

High Fashion Home Fall 2014


Mustard Yellow Makes the Ultimate Accent

Be bold and daring with mustard yellow accent pieces!



Bring Old Floors Back to Life

Revive old, abused wooden floors with a layer of color. Who says paint is only for the walls?

Wyman Hill


Elegant Kitchens

Mixing dark walnut with white counters creates subtle texture and elegance to a kitchen.

KOTW: White Monte Vista Kitchen Bradshaw Designs



Naturally Beautiful

Keep it simple! Natural linen bedding and a neutral color palette keeps the bedroom calm and relaxing.

My Houzz: Beyond the White Picket Fence



Image Resources:

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