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Milagro Custom Flooring Solutions: New Mexico's Rising Star
Milagro Custom Flooring Solutions, LLC, specializes in decorative and industrial concrete coatings, which include acid staining, overlays and epoxy finishes. Located in Albuquerque, New Mexico, the company is run by owner John Rodriguez. And although the company started in 2005, it is backed by the knowledge Rodriguez has been accumulating his entire life.
"I was exposed to construction growing up, so a lot of this is second nature to me," he explains.
Like many people, Rodriguez was working in a job (information technology) he was good at but had little passion for. Then, a former coworker of his approached Rodriguez about starting a decorative concrete business together, and they got to work doing resurfacing and restorations.
"Then he got a lucrative offer from another company and decided to take it," recalls Rodriguez. "I had to decide whether I wanted to stick with it or go back to information technology, and I decided to stay with the business on my own. It was a great challenge, but I quit my job to go after it full time two and a half years ago."
"After a while, I realized I wanted to go in a different direction," he continues. "So in January 2005 I started Milagro, focusing on acid staining and decorative elements of concrete."
After studying with Gaye Goodman, a local decorative concrete artisan, Rodriguez says he settled quickly into his growing business using all the acid staining knowledge she and her team bestowed upon him.
"This has proved to be one of the best decisions I've ever made," Rodriguez says. "It literally allowed me to combine restoration with acid staining...Most residential applications tend to need an overlayment before acid staining, so this is the best marriage possible."
Rodriguez created a specific floor that's hand-troweled and has a slate look, and this floor has put Milagro on the map. "This floor has really taken off and become a staple for me," he adds.
Although Rodriguez says interior work is Milagro's "sweet spot," allowing for exterior when the weather permits, he adds, "That's going to expand since I've teamed up with Flex-C-Ment to bring their product here."
Milagro serves all of New Mexico, West Texas (including El Paso), and Rodriguez adds that he's not opposed to going anywhere. In fact, when he was on a vacation in Alaska, Rodriguez ran into a contractor doing some work and ended up consulting on an acid staining project.
Among the many local projects Milagro has produced are the floors for the Sierra Grande Lodge and Spa in Truth or Consequence, New Mexico. "I went there for a getaway and quite fortunately met the owner, who, after a few short moments of conversation and a look at my portfolio, fell in love with my work," says Rodriguez of the 2,100-square-foot project that took two weeks to complete.
"We produced a floor unique to his tastes, and by our client's request placed a large rendition of our own logo, the Milagro turtle, in the center of his Yoga room. The turtle to us represents prosperity and good fortune, which also happened to be a fond symbol to the local community, because of a nearby mountain range known as Turtle Mountain," he adds.
At the Rancho De Corrales, in Corrales, New Mexico, Rodriguez took on the largest project Milagro's done to date, which spanned 2,400 square feet of atrium space, and led to other renovations on the building, totaling three month's of work throughout. For the pre-1800 building, a wedding and reception facility, Milagro created a monolithic acid stained surface, covering over an exposed aggregate floor with a brick inlay. "We worked around the clock, literally, to meet our client's deadline," adds Rodriguez .
For a residence in Santa Fe, New Mexico, Milagro's clients were looking for a buckskin-looking floor with walnut accents. Rodriguez says the 2,200-square-foot floor he created looks exactly like tanned leather.
For another residence, Rodriguez overlayed and stained an entire home, about 2,600 square feet, after the previous contractor the owners used was not able to achieve the desired look; they had a mono-colored overlay but they wanted to see a unique mixture of their favorite colors throughout .
"I don't bad mouth another contactor, because the problem they have today, I may have tomorrow," says Rodriguez regarding stepping in to that project.
Instead, he got to work overlaying the entire space, upstairs and down, including the staircase, using two different variations of acid stains to create the right look and a happy client.
With the phone always ringing, Rodriguez credits the Concrete Network for a lot of his business. "It's been instrumental, it's brought more people to me than I ever expected," he explains. "People contact me because I'm part of the network. It brings a lot of credibility that helps clients choose who they use."
Milagro's portfolio is 50-50 residential and commercial, with Rodriguez crediting word-of-mouth for most of the commercial calls he gets. He also gets referrals from his competitors, which fits well with his philosophy.
"It's not about keeping techniques a secret, it's about collaborating with clients... and competitors too," he explains. "My competition often refers business to me...In this industry, we need to help each other raise the bar, which helps the industry as a whole. It's our responsibility to spread knowledge and to keep this industry fun and exciting."