We discover how a fireplace can be transformed into a focal interior feature through a unique approach to materiality, form and scale.
Indoor fireplaces have been around for centuries. Even today, with modern home heating, they’re favoured for the ambience and warmth they impart to a space. In this Design Covet, we explore how this very simple feature can have a lasting impact.
Casa Albalat resides in the northwest corner of Spain in a region famous for its rugged coastlines and rolling green hills. The architect who designed the home, Andres Albalat, custom designed many of the home’s interior features himself, including the brick and copper fireplace in the front living room. Nearly fifty years have passed since the home was built, and the copper, as was Andres’ intent, has only gotten more beautiful with age. The home’s secondary fireplace, located in the other, more central living space, also makes a statement with its sculptural form and materiality of blackened steel and moss-green zellige tiles.
A trio of cottages in Victoria’s Red Hill, on the Mornington Peninsula, was remodelled by Clare Cousins Architects into a contemporary rural retreat. The home’s living space is anchored by an impressive brick fireplace – a statement in itself, elevated by a custom-designed, steel-clad, circular firewood storage unit. Clare Cousins Architects engaged Unearthed Garden’s Bec Dentry to design the storage unit, which matches the ones outdoors at the rear entry and garage wall.
Luigi Rosselli Architects have never shied away from a statement fireplace. Their Tama’s Tee House, located in Sydney’s Tamarama, features a sculptural, free-standing gas fireplace at the centre of the living, dining and kitchen spaces. The gas burner is inserted into a masonry base while the curved forms are mirrored by the passageway that floats above.
With a brief for ‘refined luxury’, Nina Maya delivered a home that blends sophisticated yet intriguing design elements set against a minimalist backdrop. The home’s living space is an amalgamation of materials, from marble to copper and resin. The space is anchored by a fireplace made by hand out of marble, limestone and brass, which took three days to install. A true display of craftsmanship, and an interesting take on form and materiality, the fireplace is, without a doubt, a topic of conversation for guests.
The Parisian home of French interior designer Isabelle Stanislas is a testament to her love of materials and commitment to design details. The designer’s Brutalist concrete fireplace contrasts with the surrounding minimalist interiors and expresses her passion for twisting raw materials. “The fireplace is designed to fold like origami; it was an extremely technical process,” she says.
In transforming the interiors of an old farmhouse in the Flanders region of Belgium, Nathalie Deboel wanted a fireplace that spoke to the building’s origins. She opted for a large-scale, freestanding fireplace at the centre of the home’s main living space, which makes a statement with its round forms and blackened-steel facade.