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Concrete Aesthetic.

Want the look of concrete with the performance of solid surfacing? Six new Corian colors mimic the real thing while sparing you and your clients its shortcomings — cracking, honeycombing, discoloration. Corian costs $45 to $75 per square foot installed. DuPont Surfaces, 800/426-7426, www.corian.com

Great Waste.

True to its name, the surfacing in the Avonite Recycled Collection contains at least 40 percent post-industrial polyester and acrylic waste. The 1/2-inch-thick sheets come in six naturalistic shades and cost about $50 to $70 per square foot installed. Aristech Acrylics, 800/354-9858, www.avonitesurfaces.com

Aluminum Alternative.

Made from recycled aluminum shavings and resin binders, Alkemi can be machined using ordinary woodworking tools. Sheets come in textured or honed finishes; in 1/2- and 3/4-inch thicknesses; and in two sizes: 36 inches by 96 inches and 36 inches by 120 inches. Colors include natural-finish, anodized, and opaque shades. Pricing depends on color and thickness but is purportedly compatible with that of other name-brand solid surfaces. Renewed Materials, 301/320-0042, www.renewedmaterials.com

Solid-Surface Stall.

These 1/4-inch-thick Shower and Tub Wall Surfaces allow you to custom-fit a smooth, easy-to-clean shower or tub surround. Components come in seven solid and matrix colors to match or contrast with optional solid-surface shower pans. Prices for one shower or tub system range from $1,100 to $2,400. Transolid, 704/660-7660, www.transolid.com


Ventilation

Pop-Up Down-Draft.

Keep sightlines above islands and other stove locations free and clear by installing a 27000 or 28000 Downdraft Series extractor. Available in two sizes — 30 and 36 inches wide — the units can be raised during use and, when idle, retracted flush with the countertop with the press of a button. The 28000 can be equipped with an exterior-mounted blower for exceptionally quiet operation. Models cost $810 (27000) and $1,190 (28000). Broan-NuTone, 800/548-0790, www.broan.com

Sleek Slide-Out.

The pull-out visor on the Cristal HC extends beyond the wall cabinets for efficient ventilation, then tucks away into an 11-inch-deep hood liner. Operated by an integral three-speed controller, the 500-cfm blower hides inside a standard wall cabinet. You can further disguise the unit's appearance by laminating the front strip to match surrounding cabinets. Suggested list prices for the 30- and 36-inch units are $640 and $660, respectively. Faber, 508/358-5353, www.faberonline.com

Culinary Art.

The Om vent hood — part of the Elica Collection — consists of a circle in a square executed in reverse-silk-screened glass. Although it hangs against the wall like a modern objet d'art, its purpose is actually to recirculate (at 450 cfm) cooking vapors through a carbon-filtration system. An integral silencer ensures quiet operation and a remote control eliminates reaching over hot cooktops. Practical, yes; but at $3,900, it's priced more like artwork. Zephyr Ventilation, 877/937-4975, www.zephyronline.com

Start From Scratch.

Build a hood shroud on your own and equip it with a high-efficiency, low-noise BUF-Pro series hood liner. With several units to choose from, you should be able to satisfy your clients' specific needs, whether for compact size, quiet operation, or high performance. Suggested list prices vary by unit from $360 to $650; one model with an external blower — #BUF-06E (shown) — costs an additional $150 to $320, depending on the cfm rating. Fujioh, 888/547-9880, www.fujioh.com/USA