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Northstar Granite Tops: Elegant stone, knowledgeable service
Hand crafting and installing granite countertops, bars, vanities and fire place surrounds are what the crew at Northstar Granite Tops in Maple Lake do best.
Owners Steve and Rock Bobick have been in the business for 14 years and their six employees all have close to 10 years of experience.
They know their craft and they know how to do it well.
Located at 601 Sixth Street in Maple Lake, Northstar Granite Tops has been the choice for new-home builders, professional remodelers and homeowners who are looking to give their existing kitchens or bathrooms new life by incorporating the beauty and durability of granite.
“You don’t need to be involved in a big remodeling project to get new countertops,” Steve said. “If everything else in your kitchen is fine and you just want new countertops, we’ll come in and install them. You won’t have to lift a finger, except maybe to call a plumber when we’re done.”
Whatever the need, the road to that new look begins at Northstar Granite Tops’ showroom.
The Bobick brothers got their start in Maple Plain back in 2002. By 2006 they had outgrown their facility and were looking for a site that would better suit their needs. They found it in Maple Lake. They now occupy an 11,000 square foot building of which 2,000 square feet is dedicated to showroom and administration.
“We have a full-scale showroom where clients can see finished kitchen islands, vanities and countertops,” Steve said. “We also have a side room with additional slabs of granite where customers can view its many different colors and patterns.”
Keri Wurm is usually the first person clients meet when they arrange a tour of the showroom. Armed with 10 years of experience, Wurm is equipped to educate and give quotes.
“It is here that we talk to our clients about edge details, corners and overhangs. We help them with design and picking out patterns and colors that match their decor,” Steve said. “They bring in samples of their existing tile, cabinets or trim and we set them up against the stone to make sure we get the color right.”
Once the stone is selected, Northstar sends a crew to the customer’s home to make plastic templates which they use as a guide to cut the stone. Rock personally oversees this part of the process.
“We are very hands-on owners,” Steve said. “This keeps the service and the end product high.”
The remaining 9,000 square feet of Northstar Granite Tops’ facility is used for fabrication. Unlike other similar companies, Northstar Granite Tops chooses to do the majority of its countertop crafting by hand instead of using machines.
Their fabricators have been doing this kind of work for about nine years and are very experienced, Steve said.
Once the countertop is crafted, it is ready for installation. The entire process after the templates are made takes about two weeks.
Steve himself is a part of each installation along with the company’s lead installer, Jesse Anderson, who has been working with Northstar Granite since 2007.
“A lot of other companies our size or bigger have owners who are not as involved as we are. I make sure that when we leave a job site, everything is perfect.”
The Northstar Granite Tops’ crew handles about 250 jobs a year all around the lakes region and into the metro. The majority of their work is indoor kitchen counters and bathroom vanities, but they are also involved in the occasional outside project. Recently they were part of KARE 11’s back yard remodel that included an outdoor kitchen.
While best known for their customized granite creations, they also work with engineered quartz, marble, soapstone, limestone, travertine and onyx. Some stones are better suited for countertops and some for fireplace surrounds and accents, depending on hardness and durability, but the Bobick brothers and their crew are willing to work with any natural stone they can get their hands on.
Since 2009 the company has been accredited by the Marble Institute of America (MIA), a distinction that demonstrates Northstar’s expertise in natural stone craftsmanship and a true concern for worker and customer safety, as well as an adherence to business ethics and sound practices.
Northstar Granite Tops became the 24th Accredited Natural Stone Fabricators in the United States, and is one of only two in Minnesota.
“We’re very proud of that,” Steve said. “It shows that we stand behind our product and we do a great job.”
An environmentally conscientious enterprise as well, Northstar’s facility was designed with a closed-loop water recycling system, requiring replacement of only what little water evaporates during the fabrication process. The company also recycles 100 percent of leftover counter top materials, donating larger remnants to local artisans and crushing the remaining scraps to be used in making road beds for the State of Minnesota.
Northstar Granite Tops is open 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. weekdays, and Saturdays by appointment. For more information or to request a free quote, visit www.northstargranitetops.com or call 320-963-8677.