Indoor Portable Fireplaces: Smokeless, Odorless Warmth & Charm

Retro Staff Comments
Indoor Chelsea Fireplace

Indoor Chelsea Fireplace

 If you’ve never seen an ethanol fireplace in action, you’re missing out on one of the coolest home decor products around.

Ethanol fireplaces stretch the definition of “fireplace,” but what it boils down to is this: A portable fireplace you can put in any room where you want to enjoy the crackle and warmth of a real fire.

Ten years ago, if you lived in an apartment and wanted a fireplace, you had to move. Now anyone living anywhere can enjoy the warmth and elegance of a fire. And the manufacturers of these innovative decor pieces are crafting beautiful, contemporary designs with flowing lines, graceful curves and a variety of materials. They’re all eye-catching and can be enhanced with fire glass and polished stones, just like a traditional fireplace.

The SoHo Ventless Stainless Steel Wall Mount Fireplace

The SoHo Ventless Stainless Steel Wall Mount Fireplace

It’s the combination of cutting-edge, eco-friendly technology and cool style that makes these fireplaces so popular. They burn bio-ethanol fuel, an alcohol made from starchy crops like corn and sugarcane. Ethanol burns odorless and smoke-free, so you don’t need a flue or chimney. (The only by-products are a small amount of carbon dioxide and water vapor.) And because it’s not tied to a chimney, you can move an ethanol fireplace around the house. Do yoga by fireside in the morning, then take the fireplace up to the bedroom for cozy nighttime reading.

There are a few points to consider before buying an ethanol fireplace. Whether you get a wall-mounted or tabletop model, don’t expect it to heat an entire room. You will get heat, but not quite that much. Second, in addition to the cost of the fireplace, think about the fuel and how much you’ll use it. A quart (32 oz.) of ethanol fuel typically burns about five hours, so you’ll want to plan and budget accordingly.

Indoor Outdoor Oasis Tabletop Fireplace

The Oasis Tabletop Fireplace can be used indoors and outdoors.

Third, and most importantly: safety. You’re dealing with fuel, open flame and portability. Are there drapes or carpeting nearby? Do you have any curious pets who might knock over a tabletop model? Here are some rules of thumb to work with:

  • Keep combustibles like drapes, decorations or books at least four feet away.
  • Never move a fireplace while it’s lit or hot.
  • Never refill a fireplace while it’s lit or hot. Wait for the fireplace to cool down before adding more fuel.
  • Follow all safety guidelines from the manufacturer. They know what they’re talking about!

How would you use an ethanol fireplace? To relax, or maybe to help you meditate or pray? Would you go for a wall mounted or tabletop model? What room could you see being enhanced by having one?

Share your vision, we’d love to hear it…


Last updated: May 02, 2012
Filed under: Retro Design Tagged with: fireplaces, home decor