MARVELOUS METAL SOLUTION

by ALAENA HOSTETTER / photography by HOLGER OBENAUS

DON’T BE FOOLED BY the name, Cantera Doors does much more than what its name would suggest. The com-pany that Laura and Mauricio Trevino founded nearly 25 years ago to supply the Austin market with wrought-iron doors has since expanded to multiple outposts around Texas and Florida. It offers national sales and installation services via its corporate headquar-ters in Austin, Texas, providing what proprietor Mauricio Trevino describes as “custom metal solutions for builders”—everything from doors to windows and staircases—you name it.

The business has maximum flexibility because it manufacturers all of its own materials with its in-house team of engineers, designers and forgers in Monterrey, Mexico. Trevino’s background in engineering combined with his family’s history in the steel industry informed his decision to get into the business in the first place.
Nearly 25 years later, doors are just a fraction of the commissions completed by Cantera Doors, and steel is just one of the materials used. The company also fabricates floating staircases, cabinet doors, shower enclosures, railings and more from steel, aluminum, stainless steel and architectural bronze.

The Trevinos point to outstanding projects such as one in Salt Lake City that involved fabricating and installing a new steel and glass facade at the entrance to a high-end apartment building. A massive old-fashioned-looking awning is framed by rows of contemporary steel-and-glass windows above and below.

Ultra-fashionable steel-and-glass windows are a big part of Cantera Doors’ business these days. “That’s what everyone wants,” Trevino says, except Cantera Doors puts an extra spin on the popular look by offering something not many other companies can—customization.

Some of the Trevinos’ favorite projects include bi-folding floor-to-ceiling glass windows that open a single wall of your home or business to the great outdoors. Even more impressively, Cantera Doors offers a corner-less bi-fold system, where two walls of glass connect at a 90-degree angle; when opened they offer unobstructed 180-degree views. The latter was well suited to the home of a Lake Travis client. “They had beautiful views of the lake and wanted to maximize that,” Trevino says.

Architects and builders seek out Cantera Doors for their residential and commercial projects not only because the company offers fashionable designs, like the aforementioned and trendy oversize pivot doors, which can reach dimensions of 7-by-10 feet, but because the team at Cantera Doors also has the engineering know-how to pull off structurally complex commissions.

As more requests for floating staircases roll in, Cantera Doors gets to flex its engineering muscles. “Most companies can’t do these because they don’t have the engineering experience for complicated designs,” Trevino explains. All of that engineering know-how is combined with state-of-the-art computer-aided design and manufacturing equipment for greater precision, quality and cost-effectiveness. “The way we build our doors is very different,” Trevino says. “All of our products are made by computerized machines, while a lot of companies are not as modernized.” Customers who opt for the typical cost-effective route are often met with lower-quality doors that can’t be customized to the needs of the high-end market.

The other advantage Cantera Doors has in a now-competitive marketplace is its level of service. “Even 10 years later, we can go to a client’s house and take care of their door so it’s like brand-new—whether that means redoing the paint or replacing glass that may have been broken,” Trevino explains. “We’ve been around for 25 years. Other companies have popped up and then close after a few years. And people who buy online aren’t going to have any support after the point of sale.”

Cantera Doors’ commitment to an exceptional customer experience may begin in the factory in Monterrey, but it extends all over North America to the on-site installation. “Our installers have been with us a long time, and they are experts at what they do. That’s why homeowners who want to remodel their houses come to us for a turnkey project. Clients can see that when they’re interacting with our team, they’re dealing with professionals,” Trevino concludes.

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Alaena Hostetter is a content strategist, editor and journalist who writes about art, design, culture, music, entertainment and food. She can be reached via her website alaenahostetter.com.