Help needed - what to do with this hearth?

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We pulled up our living room carpet to find the old concrete hearth underneath which surrounds the raised tiled hearth and meets the floorboards. In the picture you can see the raised tiled hearth in cream tiles, then the black concrete that surrounds it on the floor.

I'm not sure what to do to make this look good once the floor is restored. Options seem to be:
- Take the concrete down by the thickness of a tile and tile everything with new (fireproof) tiles, so it's all tiled in the same material but there's a 'step' down from one to the other, and the base tiles are flush with the floor
- Take the concrete down by the thickness of a floorboard and lay three floorboards around the raised heard instead to box it in and blend in with the rest of the floor
- Repair/paint the concrete hearth and hope it looks good?

I don't want to raise the whole hearth (including the concrete area) as that'll take too much walking space out of the room, and I can't lower the current tiled hearth/fireplace.

Any help or guidance on this much appreciated!

whatsapp-image-2021-12-08-at-1-22-15-pm-jpeg.253501
 

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It will be a ball ache to try and get it removed to a flush level for boards or tiles.
Use the 'if you can't hide it, make a feature of it' rule and paint it to match the room decor.
 
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Check whether the black concrete is a big thick lump of concrete, or just an inch layer of cement on top of a thick lump of concrete. In a 1930's flat I once owned it was an easily removeable top layer.
 
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is the fire a real one?
or gas/decorative?

real fires have the risk of flammable material falling out - which is why the original was so big.

You could carefully remove the old tiles and replace them.
My mate painted his whole tiled area matt black with some kind of stove paint and it looks good.
You could make /have made a hardwood surround for the raised bit so only the top was visible.
a stone mason could probably cut you a thin slab of marble or similar to encase the surround.
 
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Thank you everyone. Yes, it is a real fire that we'll be using so want to make sure we're not going against any fire regulations.

Thanks Tigercubrider - we'll carefully replace the cream tiles on the raised bit.
For the black concrete I'll check how deep it goes. I think the best thing visually would to dig down by a couple of cm and lay 3 floorboards on top so it looks like part of the floor, but again I'm not sure if it'd be a problem putting floorboards that close to the fire.

Really appreciate all the help.
 
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