Not all areas of the country have good contractors and suppliers experienced with exposed aggregate.
I had a small (15 x 20) exposed aggregate patio done.
The contractor did not have to call a day ahead, but called at 8:00AM while forming and placing wire for a load of "MacDonald's Mix" (designed for exposed aggregate at the "Golden Arches" for winter durability - 5000 psi and air entrained) to be delivered at 12:00. This is a standard mix. They were done at 3:00.
Then, a problem became evident at 7:30 the next morning. When they came to wash it, they discovered the retarder was mis-labeled and was actually curing compound. Tear out (with mesh of course), reform amd reorder for 11:00 concrete. It came and they were gone at 1:30. Back the next AM to wash. Clean and coat the next day. - My exposed aggregate patio that may have cost $500 more than plain concrete increased the value of my townhouse by much more the extra above plain concrete and I get to look at something much nicer.
Exposed aggregate is obviously more expensive because of extra steps AND the potential for mistakes (mislabled sprayers, etc.), but good contractors and suppliers recognize the extra cost to do a better job.
The mistake cost me nothing because the contractor recognized the extra labor to do it right in the end and someone may have had to pay for the mislabled spray problem (changed suppliers, so the smeel was not a tip-off).
If I could not have felt confident in the contractor doing exposed, I would have had someone else do concrete pavers for a real first-class job.
A plain concrete patio would have been adequate, but it would not have been a good investment when you have good contractors and ready-mix suppliers available.