What Kinds of Exotic Hardwood Flooring are Available?

by Eric Hurst

Exotic flooring is one of the most popular categories in the wood floor industry today. Exotic wood floors come in a huge variety of different species from several different regions throughout the world. You can learn about and shop for exotic hardwood flooring on our website flooring.org for the best prices and the most information available anywhere!

Exotic Tigerwood Hardwood Flooring

An enormous selection of different colors can be found in the world's exotic hardwoods, like the dark red of Brazilian cherry, the natural brown tones of Brazilian chestnut, or the light cremes of Australian cypress that is speckled all over with dark brown knots. Most exotic wood floors are incredibly dense, especially the rain forest woods found in Brazil and throughout South America.

What is exotic hardwood flooring?

The term exotic hardwood flooring is certainly relative to wherever you may be located when reading this article. Since the majority of our clients are in the USA, this article is written from that perspective. So here in the U.S. we consider hardwood floors imported from other countries and continents to be exotic wood floors.

This would include hardwoods from Brazil, Chile, other parts of south america, Africa, Australia and Asia.

Brazilian & South American Hardwood Flooring

Brazil and other South American countries are home to the most popular exotic wood floors in the world. These woods are world renowned for their incredible hardness and density. The long rainy seasons, high humidity levels, and rich soil in these forests are credited with making these brazilian hardwoods so dense.

Types of South American exotic hardwood flooring that are available include: Brazilian Cherry (Jatoba), Brazilian Walnut (Ipe), Brazilian Teak (Cumaru), Brazilian Chestnut (Sucupira)Santos Mahogany, Tigerwood, Amendoim, Brazilian Oak (Tauari), Andiroba, Bloodwood, Brazilian Redwood (Massaranduba), Brazilian Ebony, Lapacho and others.

You will be able to find all of these Brazilian hardwoods and more in both solid hardwood and engineered hardwood construction, as well as different textures like smooth, hand scraped, wire-brushed and distressed, and you should have no problem finding most of them in both Unfinished or Prefinished options.

Australian Hardwood Flooring Choices

Australian Cypress Exotic Wood Floors

Australian hardwoods have grown in popularity in recent years. The most popular of them all is Australian Cypress flooring, which is predominately cream colored with beautiful variations of brown throughout and prolific knotting making this on the most unique woods in the world.

Other Australian hardwood flooring choices available include Australian Jarrah, Australian Spotted Gum and Tasmanian Oak, however Australian Cypress really carries the load of this continent's world-wide flooring export market.

Hardwood Flooring from Africa

African hardwoods are also growing in popularity, and include a pretty good variety of exotic woods, although only a handful of them have a major presence in the US. African woods, much like South American hardwoods, are very dense and have very rich and bold colors.

African Exotic Wood Flooring

Some of the more popular exotic African flooring options include: African Sapele (African Mahogany), African Rosewood, African Wenge, Doussie and Bubinga, while some of the lesser known African hardwoods are: Izombe, Afrormosia, Celtis, Makore, Iroko, Danta, Wawabima and Denya.

The more popular African species should be pretty easy to find in a variety of different plank sizes and construction types (solid & engineered) and different surface treatments like hand scraped and distressed varieties. The lesser known species like Iroko and Makore may be a little less various in the design options available to you.

The Bottom Line with Exotic Hardwood Floors

Installing exotic wood floors in your home is a great way to set your home apart from the rest, since the vibrant colors and unfamiliar grain patterns of exotic woods are sure to catch the eye of any visitors. Add to their beauty that most exotic woods are harder and more durable than domestic North American wood floors, and you've got quite a good case for choosing exotic wood flooring for your next flooring project.

You can browse dozens of exotic wood flooring varieties on our website at flooring.org where learning about floors is free, and you save hundreds when you buy!

This article was published on Friday 24 February, 2012.
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