A built in media wall is a great way to stylishly house your TV and audio equipment, while hiding wires and creating extra storage. In Andrew’s case, he wanted an entertainment center that could accommodate the needs of his family now, and appeal to a tenant should he decide to rent out the space in the future. A media wall was the perfect solution.
Every room needs to have a single focal point, and in Andrew’s basement there was the potential for multiple (i.e. the fireplace and the television). In order to make them all work together the media wall was designed to accommodate all the disparate pieces. Now the entire wall becomes the focal point with an emphasis on the right hand side where the television and fireplace are housed. The left hand side blends into the surroundings and provides storage and extra seating.
Color & Material
- In open concept spaces it’s important for all the elements to tie together. In this case, the color and style of the media wall connects with the cabinets and counters in the kitchen, creating a smooth transition from one space to the other. The storage portion of the wall consists of Aya’s Manhattan collection in slate grey walnut – the same as the kitchen island. The TV and fireplace side is covered in a light, neutral tile that compliments and connects to the color and finish of the quartz in the kitchen.
- The linear tile, measuring 10” x 30” mimics the linear style of the fireplace and television. Large format tiles keep the space from looking too busy.
- The size and color of the fireplace were chosen specifically to match the television as closely as possible. Choosing the landscape, or linear, style allowed for consistency between the two main pieces and the tile.
- The height of the fireplace was determined based on mandatory spacing requirements for gas fireplaces, along with the fact that the large TV had to hang overhead.
- The fireplace is controlled by Napoleon’s Bluetooth®enabled eFIRE app, which allows the user to adjust the flame height, the blower speed, LED light features and more directly from a mobile device. Not only does this make using the fireplace convenient, it eliminates the need for extra remote controls.
- How big is too big when it comes to televisions is a debate that rages on. Some people insist that bigger is better for viewing, while the design-focused often prefer something smaller that can be incorporated into the decor. In this case Andrew was adamant that he wanted a 60” screen. While the size is a bit big for the room and the viewing distance, he wasn’t interested in compromising. So the television was incorporated into the right-hand side of the media wall above a fireplace measuring the same width. Together they read as one unit, minimizing the large scale of the television.
- The television was mounted higher than is normally recommended. The reason for this is that there are minimum clearances required when mounting a television over a gas fireplace. In order to accommodate all the things Andrew wanted the height had to be adjusted. However while it’s a bit high for people seated on the sofa, it is the right height for those standing in the kitchen.
- An arm that has the ability to pull out and swivel was installed to hold the television. It can be recessed and hidden when viewers are seated on the sofa, and pulled out and turned slightly for those watching from the kitchen.
- The television cavity was painted a flat black so that light would be absorbed and wouldn’t bounce off the finish. Black tile profiles from Schluter were used to transition from the tile finish to the painted finish.
- Incorporating a window into a media wall can pose challenges since it can create conflicting focal points and potentially cause a glare next to the TV, but in this space there was no other option. In order to minimize its effect we opted for a sheer window covering (with optional automated blackout layer) that blocks the glare but still lets in light.
- The window trim was painted out to match the wall veneer so that it it blends in.
- Like the fireplace, the window treatments can be controlled by remote access, making them easy to adjust as the the light changes throughout the day.
- Generally speaking, the more storage you can fit into a media wall the better. However, in this case, it was decided to leave some open space for a display area and extra seating. But storage was not neglected as cabinets line the bottom of the unit and shelves line the interior of the left side cabinet.
- Cables from the television run through the back of the unit and down into the bottom storage area so that there is easy access for plugging in gaming consoles and the like.
- A bar, or drink station, is a great asset in a space designed for entertaining. In the storage side of the media wall we included shelves to display bottles and glasses, a quartz counter for cutting and serving, and strip lighting to highlight the display and light up the work station.
- The entire bar area acts as an appliance garage, meaning there is an outlet on the back wall allowing for blenders and other small appliances to be used. When the doors are closed the power is automatically shut off to ensure safety.
- The doors of the storage area can be opened and slid back into the unit so that the bar can be exposed and easily accessed when in use, and then closed and hidden away.