We love a good wood burning fire, but if less is always more for you, there are vent-free (and log-free) fireplaces. The ultra-modern Fire Ribbon by Spark Fires works as a single flaming line (okay, a "ribbon") in a deeply recessed rectangular setting.
Comes with safety guarantees and a swanky price tag ($3,999), and many mounting/display options.
We prefer a lot of things the old fashioned way. What are your thoughts on ventless, logless, nearly "placeless" fires?
See also AT Survey: Have a Fireplace at Home?