As the nights draw in and the weather turns colder, it’s not just the heat that makes an indoor fire so enticing. The smell, the sound, the warm soft light; it’s almost impossible to replicate the atmosphere conjured by a roaring hearth. Whether it has a simple marble surround or a grand chimneypiece, fireplaces also provide a focal point for a room and help add character and charm to a space.
Lyndale House, a Grade II Listed Queen Anne style home in Highgate is an excellent example of a London property with an impressive period fireplace. Originally built in the 1600s, the house was divided into two properties in 1730 and now offers 3,166 sq. ft of living space set over five floors.
On the market for £4 million, the house has five bedrooms and three reception rooms as well as a large garden and brick pergola extending 207 ft. The most remarkable room in the house is undoubtedly the first floor drawing room, painted duck-egg blue with period panelling and delicate cornicing.
Set around a grey marble fireplace with a white mantelpiece, visitors are immediately transported back in time thanks to the room’s individually Listed ceiling and sash windows. It’s easy to imagine guests in the 1700s warming their hands by the hearth and gazing onto the Duke of Lauderdale’s private gardens which now form part of Waterlow Park.
With the holidays approaching, a fireplace can also add magic to a festive dinner table. Tetherdown Street in Muswell Hill has a wood burning stove in its dining room that makes the space feel rustic and cosy. Set within a tiled recess with a grand marble surround, the fireplace adds to the home’s country feel with period floors, high ceilings and a wisteria summer house in the back garden.
Fireplaces are also great for adding interest to a modern home. Studio 35, a Grade II Listed house in Hampstead, once formed part of a row of original workers' cottages in the 19th Century. Today, the £2.75 million artisan designed home has a double height studio and an enclosed central courtyard lined with crittal style windows. The main living area is minimalist in design, but a statement black stove descending from the ceiling adds drama and character to the room.
Chris Cady, Director of Dexters Westminster says, ‘Fires certainly bring value to a property. A good fireplace is a character feature that sits in the heart of your home and provides practical heating as well as visual appeal.'