As fireplace technology is improving, design limitations are disappearing (and it’s great news for architects and interior designers).

Features like Escea’s Zero Clearance rating and flexible flue system are enabling designers to experiment more and more with their fireplace installations. The result is boundary-pushing, design-led fireplace designs that not only look impressive, but are easy to install and heat efficiently too.

If you’re redecorating, renovating or building in 2020 and need some insight or inspiration, see what fireplace designs are trending in the architectural and interior design world this year.

1. Elevated Freestanding Fireplaces


Escea DFS Freestanding Gas Fireplace | Design by Clare Cousins | Photography by Tess Kelly Photography.


Escea DFS Freestanding Gas Fireplace | Design by MODO Architects | Photography by Ben Hosking


Escea DFS Freestanding Gas Fireplace|  Design by Ply Architecture | Photography by Sam Noonan


Escea DFS Freestanding Fireplace | Design by Adam Taylor Architect | Photography by Simon Devitt

Perhaps one of the most noticeable trends of 2019 and moving into 2020 is the freestanding fireplaces perched at eye-level, rather than sitting on the floor. Ledges are being constructed from materials like brick, concrete and even ply.

Technology such as Escea’s Zero Clearance rating means that you no longer need a hearth, which is why this type of installation is now possible with gas fires. Homeowners are loving this because it means when they’re sitting on the couch, you’ve got the beautiful flames in your direct eye-line instead of the floor.

Expect to see more of this industrial-style install throughout 2020.

2. Unconventional Shapes & The Corner Fire


Spartherm Corner Wood Fire | Design by James Stockwell | Build by Spearhead Developments.


Spartherm Corner Wood Fire | Photography by Jason Mann Photography


Spartherm Corner Wood Fire | Photography by Jason Mann Photography


MODE Corner Gas Fireplace

Advances in fireplace technology in recent years have meant that the traditional single sided square or rectangular fireplaces are no longer the only options available. We’re seeing unconventional shapes like two sided and three sided fires becoming more popular in both wood and gas. Homeowners are looking for ways to make their homes stand out and a fireplace in an unexpected shape is a great way to do this.

The corner fire’s popularity has particularly been growing – the minimalist design works well in large open plan areas with multiple zones, visually connecting two adjoining spaces.

Check out the MODE Corner Gas Fire and Spartherm Corner Wood Fire at Stoke.

3. Industrial Surrounds: Brick & Steel


Escea DS Series | Build by John Gavin Construction



Spartherm XL Wood Fire | Photography by Ray Tiddy


Escea DF960 | Photography by The Palm Co


Escea DS1400 Gas Fireplace | Design by Lisa Larkin


Escea DS1400 Gas Fireplace | Design by Mancini Made

Expect to see more industrial surrounding materials like steel paneling and bricks.  

Steel paneling is being softened by timber accents and bricks have been used in lighter, calming colours rather than the traditional red.

4. Smart Design & Bespoke Cabinetry


Escea DF960 Gas Fireplace | Design by Paul Tilse Architects and Vanessa Hawes Interior Design | Photography by Anne Stroud


Escea DL1100 Gas Fireplace | Design by Matyas Architects


Escea DS1150 Gas Fireplace

The beauty of gas fireplace innovation means that some fireplaces don’t need large clearances any more.

Escea’s Zero Clearance rating means that almost any material can now surround a fireplace or be built around it. This has enabled designers to be smarter when designing and utilising space that was perhaps previously void. Everything from cabinets, open shelving, a TV, entertainment unit or even a bar can be positioned beside the fire. This also makes them a great choice for smaller homes where space is at a premium.

Expect to see more fireplaces in unconventional places and smaller spaces.

5. Marble 


Escea DS1400 Gas Fireplace | Design by Nina Maya Interiors | Photography by Felix Forest


Escea DF700 Gas Fireplace | Design by Paul Tilse Architects and Vanessa Hawes Interior Design | Photography by Rodrigo Vargas 

sebastians high res 51

Escea DS1650 Gas Fireplace | Design by Snell Studio | Photography by The Palm Co 

Marble is a timeless, hardy stone that’s been a popular choice for fireplace surrounds for hundreds of years. And this year, rather than seeing the common white calacatta, carrara or statuary variations, we’re noticing bolder colours and shapes like emerald green, black marble and even curves.

The soft lines of arches and curves were a hot interior trend of 2019 and this year it shows no sign of slowing down, even when it comes to fireplace surrounds.

6. Double-Sided Room Dividers


Escea DX1000 Gas Fireplace | Design by Williams Burton Leopardi 



Spartherm Double Sided Wood Fire | Photography by Mark Scowen


Escea Double Sided DS1900 Gas Fireplace

As Kiwis, we love open plan living and the fireplace has adapted to this style of living with the introduction of the double sided fireplace.

Not only do double sided fireplaces make a great feature, the can play a pivotal role in the spatial design and layout of a home too. Because of their see-through window, double sided fires are perfect for creating separate living zones within a large open plan space, plus they look impressive and heat efficiently too.

Expect to see more ultra-wide double sided fireplaces in 2020 like the Escea DS Series which is available at nearly two metres long.