10 Hot Fireplaces to Cozy Up To

It's true: A fireplace is the focal point of any living room. Whether you prefer a stone surround or something more modern, these fireplaces prove that a striking design is all it takes to become center stage in these stylish spaces.

Set in Stone

Designer Brian Patrick Flynn certainly knows how to make a natural stone surround stand out in a beautiful way — he used patterned fabric against the back wall as a stunning accent to the aubergine mantelpiece. Among a sea of modern furnishings and purple accents, the rustic stone fireplace seems so natural and at ease.

Floor-to-Ceiling Warmth

Today, some modern fireplaces are actually considered works of art. The Focus fireplace, created by sculptor Dominique Imbert, is suspended from the ceiling and has four curved, heat-resistant glass windows that completely surround the fire for all-around warmth. This spacious, two-story living room forces the slender unit to become a dramatic staple within the space. Rather than focus the sofas around a television or the obvious ocean views, the designer chooses to gravitate around the fireplace, making the natural flames the main attraction. Image courtesy of CF+D | Custom Fireplace Design

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Firescape Art

Fireplaces provide far more than heat and a cozy place to curl up. They can fulfill architectural roles and become artistic accouterments. This fireplace serves as a sophisticated room divider, and it demands attention. The gas-fed flames rise out of a bed of shiny river rock set on a four-foot long firescape. It is mounted below an upside-down chimney in this home's living room. Image courtesy of Alan Dyson

Vintage Appeal

Designer Sarah Richardson created a living room that's just as warm as her fireplace by integrating splashes of burnt orange, apricot, garnet and other rich colors among a neutral color palette. The fireplace and surround — made of white-washed stone and timeworn materials — are meant to stand out among Sarah's rich color scheme, thanks to an extra-large vintage crest mounted above the mantel. The wood-burning fireplace adds to the rustic, at-home feel of the farmhouse that makes the living room feel so welcoming.

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Clean and Open

The beauty of this fireplace is its freedom. It easily mounts on the floor, sitting on a base of masonry or black steel, and it can be installed in almost any room. The gas flame is visible from every direction, set behind a band of glass panels that slide around the fireplace's metal trunk. The designer drew inspiration from the open space and clean lines of Japanese interiors. Image courtesy of Steve Rasmick

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Modern Versatility

Gas-fed hearths are easy, clean and versatile. The three-foot, vent-free fireplace by Spark Modern Fires is creatively built into the living room bookcase. The unit shares a metal front with a television, creating a cozy, multiuse living space. It can be fitted with a stainless steel interior to add reflectiveness. Image courtesy of by Julia Hein

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Bring On the Cold

In an cold-weather environment like Stowe, Vt., designer Linda Woodrum knew the fireplace would be used quite often, so she undoubtedly made it the centerpiece of the gathering room in HGTV Dream Home 2011. This energy-efficient gas fireplace offers the convenience of a preset thermostat with its sleek stainless steel design. To complement the maple flooring and pull in a taste of the outdoors, Linda added birch panels to the fireplace chase and a three-dimensional, steel wall sculpture with midcentury designs in mind.

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Eye-High Embers

This fireplace from Spark Modern Fires combines a thoroughly utilitarian idea with contemporary artistic grace. The slim, eye-level gas fireplace hangs on the wall and is made of brushed stainless steel with a single ceramic glass panel. It is clean, easily maintained and a breeze to install. Image courtesy of Spark Modern Fires

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Simple Sophistication

The Neofocus from Euroflues is a single-unit steel fireplace that comes in a wood-burning version or as a remote-controlled gas unit. Both are set in the wall and make linear rectangular statements. The gas version is fit with ceramic pebbles of various sizes or ceramic logs. It is installed with protective masonry around the firebox and upper and lower air vents. Image courtesy of Euroflues

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Linear Elegance

It is as sleek and slim as a flat-screen television with a linear, boldly contemporary presence. It has been described as \"a fireplace with a sculptural presence, without a hint of pretension.\" The fireplace is thermal efficient, and its flame sits behind a heat-resistant glass door that allows a complete view of what's inside. Image courtesy of Euroflues

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