Commercial and Residential Glass Installer and Manufacturer Resource

6 Places Where Commercial Glass Upgrades Design & Function

Jan 22, 2024 3:19:37 PM / by Greg Martell


Commercial glass restaurant

The business center at an upscale hotel you’re staying at. The walls of your favorite restaurant. Even your shower. 

What do these spaces have in common? They’re all prime real estate for commercial glass

While common enough to go unnoticed — there’s rarely a building that doesn’t have glass somewhere — glass pieces can go the extra distance to add functionality or enhance the design of a space. 

From making the best first impression to keeping people safe, we’ve compiled a list of places where glass is a great fit.

6 Places Where Commercial Glass Makes a Big Impact

As a material that meets several uses, glass is well suited for many places. Six locations ideal for commercial glass include:

  1. Hotels
  2. Restaurants
  3. Offices
  4. Customer reception areas
  5. Commercial entryways
  6. Bathrooms

1. Hotels Commercial glass hotel exterior

In the hospitality industry, a first impression is everything. Glass sets an aesthetic throughout an entire hotel. 

Clear glass products, like low-iron glass, show modernity and cleanliness in areas like the lobby and guestroom bathrooms. Patterned and colored glasses set the stage for luxury or distinction. Colored mirrors are another great option to enhance a hotel’s design while adding additional functionality. 

With additional glass services and fabrication, glass pieces add a unique focal point to a room. Fabrication techniques to ask your glass company about include: 

2. Restaurants commercial glass - restaurant

Another member of the hospitality industry, restaurants can enjoy the same benefits of glass as a hotel. 

Glass products are particularly helpful for creating an atmosphere. Colored glass panes and mirrors enhance your restaurant’s aesthetics, whether you’re creating an ambiance for a dapper brewpub or a bright and spacious family-style eatery. Behind a bar, colored glass and mirror offer the same eye-catching improvements, helping to set your space apart.

3. Offices commercial glass - office separators

Gone are the days of offices being sterile environments with identical rows of desks. Design trends now favor open-concept floor plans and vibrant workspaces. Commercial glass is the perfect complement to any modern office design. 

In corporate workplaces, glass office walls are an economical option to renovate a space for both privacy and literal transparency. Finished with V-grooving, those same clear dividers feature unique designs — even those you create. 

Glass also protects the health and safety of employees. Portable glass partitions and sneeze guards provide that extra layer of separation between co-workers to prevent the spread of airborne diseases.

4. Customer Reception Areas commercial glass - waiting room

Whether it’s for safety or security, commercial glass can act as a barrier between customers and staff members. 

Both tempered and laminated glass products do just that. In addition to creating separation between people, both glasses provide enhanced safety — they’re among the strongest glasses on the market and are very difficult to break

The glass that provides separation between employees and customers doesn’t have to be actual glass. Polycarbonate and acrylic sheets are suitable glass alternatives. Both thermoplastics are strong and durable and boast the same transparency as traditional glass. What’s more, to the untrained eye, the difference between polycarbonate and acrylic sheets compared to standard glass is negligible — it’s very difficult to tell the materials apart.

5. Commercial Entrywayscommercial glass entryway

Just like glass used in customer reception areas, tempered and laminated glasses are ideal for entryways. Not only do both glasses stand up to the heaviest of direct blows, but they’re also a lesser threat to public safety if they break.

Heated to temperatures above 1000℉ and then quickly cooled, a tempered glass pane’s surface is compressed while its center is under tension. These opposing forces make a piece resist bending and breaking. When broken, tempered glass shatters into small, pebble-like pieces that are easier to sweep up than jagged shards of all sizes.  

Learn more about the tempering process:

Download A Vendor's Guide to Glass Tempering


Laminated glass isn’t just one pane of glass — it’s actually at least two. Manufactured by sandwiching a clear vinyl layer between glass plies, pieces of laminated glass stay intact when broken — shards won’t go flying when a pane is struck

You can cut and shape both safety glasses to the specific dimensions of their installation space.

6. Bathrooms commercial glass - bathroom

On the residential glass side, bathrooms are full of possibilities. The two most common glass applications? Mirrors and custom shower enclosures. 

For those looking to take their mirrors to the next level, copper-free and low-iron glass mirrors are top contenders.

Copper-free mirrors are manufactured to withstand the test of time — even in humid environments, such as a bathroom after a long, hot shower.

During manufacturing, panes of glass are coated with a specialized silvering paint before a protective layer is applied. Copper is not used to prime a glass pane’s surface.

The mirror’s reflective backing is then sealed, increasing its resistance to corrosion and peeling. (We can only provide copper-free mirrors for large-quantity projects).

Mirrors made with low-iron glass provide unobstructed clarity. Low-iron glass is clear and very transparent because it is made with materials that have a little bit of iron. When used to make a mirror, low-iron glass lets a reflected image shine back unobstructed. 

For custom shower enclosures, low-iron and tempered glasses are the first choices.  

Because of its colorless appearance and enhanced light transmission, low-iron glass creates a nearly invisible barrier for showers. Depending on an enclosure’s construction, you may notice the edges of low-iron glass pick up on the colors of the materials around it, such as tile or walls. 

Of the safety glasses, tempered glass is preferable for interior applications, primarily because of its superior strength and how it breaks. On the off chance that a tempered glass shower enclosure is broken, there won’t be sharp, jagged pieces of glass strewn about a bathroom. 


Need Commercial Glass for Your Project? 

Glass is a material that offers true versatility — if you’ve got a project, there’s a glass type that’s a good option. 

The best part about integrating glass into a space, be it an office space or your bathroom, is that the right material serves multiple purposes and maximizes your investment. A commercial glass company can help you choose the best glass for your money without sacrificing function or intended effect. 

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We’re ready to discuss your project and find the perfect glass for it. 

Contact us — let’s set up a time to talk! 

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Topics: Commercial Glass, Tempered Glass, Commercial Mirror, Shower Enclosures, Glass Design, Acrylic, Polycarbonate, Mirror, Low-iron glass, Laminated Glass

Written by Greg Martell