A luxury Oxfordshire hotel has Aquapanel in its bathroom walls to ensure that expensive tiling stays firmly in place, irrespective of how much guests splash when showering. The market leading tile backer board has been installed in the 52 bedrooms and key ‘wet’ service areas of the new four star hotel at Bicester Country Club to support heavy tiling.
Interfacing seamlessly with plasterboard lining and partitioning systems, Aquapanel from Knauf Drywall is a cement based board that eliminates tiling failures.

The new hotel is a significant addition to the existing sport and leisure facilities at the 145 acre Bicester Country Club at Chesterton. All rooms and suites in the hotel are finished to a high specification and offer views over either the Club’s 18 hole golf course or a luxuriant courtyard. The latest development also includes conference rooms, new kitchens and additional bar facilities, to accommodate a wide range of corporate and private functions. Knauf Wallboard is used to line masonry walls in the hotel and to provide the dry side of the steel stud partition walls between bedrooms and bathrooms. Some walls of the bathrooms and service areas are lined with Knauf Moistureshield, while bath, shower and sink surrounds have Aquapanel linings for the best possible protection against the effects of splashing during frequent and sometimes heavy use.

John Farragher, Director of Harmonix Construction, says: “Aquapanel was specified for this project because of its excellent performance as a tile backer. It is the right choice for tiling in any wet environment, and especially where heavy, expensive tiles are used in a luxury setting. It is easy to work with, and we would certainly consider using it for other building projects in the future.”

Harmonix Construction specialises in mid-range contracts in London and the South East, and its portfolio of newbuild and refurbishment projects since its inception nine years ago covers all sectors of the market. Knauf Drywall systems for the Bicester Country Club development were sourced through Encon’s branch at Witney, Oxfordshire.

Aquapanel is a 12.5mm fibre reinforced cement board that is used instead of plasterboard for drywall solutions in wet areas indoors. It is primarily a tile backer, capable of supporting tiling up to 50kg/m2, but may also be used with other finishes. Aquapanel is incredibly strong, and retains its full strength even when fully immersed in water. Its keyed surface ensures permanent adhesion, so if moisture seeps through the grouting it cannot cause tile failures. Supplied in 2,400 x 900mm and 1,200 x 900mm boards, Aquapanel is simply cut to size using the score and snap technique, and fixed like plasterboard to steel or timber studs. Knauf Drywall also offers Aquapanel accessories including screws and jointing tape.

Knauf Drywall manufactures a full range of plasters, plasterboards, insulating laminates, dry flooring, drywall accessories, and metal sections for domestic, commercial and public sector applications. Knauf Drywall pioneered carbon neutral plasterboard in the UK with Knauf Futurepanel. Knauf Drywall also actively promotes recycling from building sites and has a zero waste policy in its energy efficient factories at Sittingbourne in Kent and Immingham on Humberside.

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