This was a real selling point for us when we bought the house. The built in adds real charm to the room, and will certainly be a great display case once we're finished. But off white doesn't suit it. We're going to have to find a way to make this pop.
The fireplace was also a selling point. However, the moulding and the paint just scream "blah" to me. Growing up we had a brick surround with a solid oak mantle. So, here the question seems to be: "natural wood, stone, or paint?"