Margaritelli Italia SpA marketing director Andrea Margaritelli greets guests during the company's event at New York's Guggenheim Museum.

The continuing emphasis on hardwood flooring that is chic yet sensible was clearly in evidence at Margaritelli Italia SpA's recent posh gala in New York City. To showcase its stylish new Listone Giordano line of engineered flooring in a suitably upscale setting, the Italian manufacturer hosted designers and other industry guests in the rotunda of Guggenheim Museum on Fifth Ave. The event, billed as "an evening of entertainment and education," included remarks from the noted Italian architect Massimo Iosa Ghini, a performance by jazz pianist Danilo Rea and a sampling of savory food and wine from the company's native Umbria region.

Although well established in its native country, Margaritelli has been working to build a greater presence in the U.S. market through its flagship Listone Giordano showroom in New York and a nationwide network of 60 stores. The company is trumpeting a variety of unique hardwood finishes: Xplus provides eight coats of finish with a semi-gloss satin look. Naturplus is eight coats of natural-looking matte finish for Margaritelli's Plank 140 and 190 collections. The Natif finish uses natural oils and waxes to protect the wood while still allowing it to breathe to help enhance its natural qualities. The latest collection, Michelangelo, is created with an oil finish that also enhances the wood's appearance. The wide plank flooring in the line is colored with vegetable extracts.

Margaritelli executives on hand at the venerable museum assured that Listone Giordano flooring is upscale but not out of reach. They noted the product line boosts an array of styles that range from uniform hardwood grains to notch cuts in the support layer to smooth wear-resistant finishes. The products are manufactured from hardwoods from around the globe, they said, and are designed to grow more attractive with time and use.