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Harnessing raw materials
for an urban setting
Model: XL900 (2x) & Stix Private Residence, USA

City Skyline

Contemporary, open and innovative, this home was created as a reflection of the progressive American city it overlooks. An open plan combines indoor and outdoor living, and brings areas for dining, cooking and relaxing together to build the heart of the home. Jon Luce, the builder of this amazing house, says the main living space reflects exactly how modern people live.

“The living room in this home is absolutely stunning,” he says. “It is both cosy and versatile. When the door is closed, the view of the city of Austin is unobstructed, and when the door is opened, the space becomes twice as big and is breathtaking. Because of the relationship between the in and outdoor areas, it made sense to use EcoSmart Fires in both spaces.”

EcoSmart Fires form the focal points of both the living room and the outdoor entertaining area, and complement the stunning city lights that brighten the skyline at night. Two XL900 burners create an extra elongated fireplace that is set into an expansive feature wall in the living room, while a portable Stix fire extends entertaining to the outdoors, creating a perfect location for a modern gathering.

“When this home was completed in early December 2012, we had a holiday party and had over 200 guests in the living room with the wall of doors open,” Jon says.

Working with Dick Clark Architecture, Jon and his team aimed to create a home that encompassed the amazing views and city lifestyle as well as harnessing natural elements of the hillside the property is located on.

The extensive use of fire throughout the living areas, coupled with the textures of wood and stone and a natural colour scheme, achieves this ideal. The dark brown and beige colour scheme that runs through the furnishings of the main living room complements the colouring of the two large oak trees that wrap around the home, and, in particular, the locally quarried Leuders limestone of the feature wall the main fireplace is set into further emphasises the natural elements that define the home.

Although this wall would normally pose a challenge to builders wishing to install a fireplace, Jon says the use of a non-venting fireplace made his job much easier when planning the space.

“The simplicity of the firebox and burner concept solves several issues that are always a challenge when penetrating the building envelope with a flue.”

Jon Luce, Builder

As such, the XL900 burners are set into a fabricated steel box which was made from half inch thick cold-rolled plate steel. And to further enhance the design aesthetic, large natural stones were placed around the two burners.

Jon says he has used EcoSmart Fires in many building projects over the past few years, attributing this to the obvious quality of the product and the suitability of the fires to his clients’ needs. More often than not, EcoSmart’s eco credentials were also a contributing factor to their inclusion in the final design.

“Austin is a very progressive and vibrant city with a population that values the environment and the use of environmentally sensitive building materials and practices,” says Jon. “Basically our market is very appreciative of new cutting edge features that are both aesthetically cool while being eco-friendly.”


  • Country: United States
  • Specifier: Jon Luce
  • Photographer: Alexander Stross

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