29 Coastal Living Room Ideas for a Modern Beach Home

By Interior Designer TRACY SVENDEN | Published January 31, 2024 |

With the right design elements and accessories, you can create a coastal-inspired living room that will make you feel like you’re on vacation every day. From a soothing color palette inspired by the ocean with bright white and wood tones and nautical decor accents, here you’ll find everything you need to turn your coastal living room design into a beachside haven.

Imagine lounging on a plush sofa with a cool ocean breeze gently wafting through open windows, surrounded by coastal-themed artwork and natural and organic accents. Whether you live by the sea or miles away, you can easily transform your living room into a coastal paradise that embodies the tranquility and beauty of the ocean. Image courtesy of Jennifer Wundrow Interiors.

Coastal Living Room Ideas

Bright and Airy Coastal Living Room
Image courtesy of Bria Hammel Design

Benefits of a Coastal-Style Living Room

A coastal-themed living room offers numerous benefits that go beyond aesthetics. Not only does it create a calming and peaceful environment, but it also evokes a sense of serenity and relaxation. The coastal theme brings the beauty of nature indoors and allows you to escape the stresses of everyday life. 

Here are a few key elements of coastal living rooms:

 1. A Laid Back & Relaxed Coastal Vibe

The coastal theme promotes a relaxed and laid-back feel, perfect for unwinding after a long day. The soothing colors and natural elements create a tranquil space that encourages relaxation.

Laid Back Coastal Design

Laid-Back Coastal Design
Image courtesy of Sarah Richardson Design

2. Connection with Nature

Living by the coast or not, a coastal-themed living room allows you to connect with nature. Using natural materials like wood, seashells, and plants brings the outdoors in, making you feel closer to the beach and the ocean.

Coastal Living Room Decorating Ideas

Cozy Coastal Living Room
Image courtesy of Kara Miller Interiors

3. Sense of Serenity

The coastal theme is known for its peaceful vibes. The combination of soft colors, natural textures, and gentle ocean-inspired accents creates a serene ambiance that promotes a sense of calmness and tranquility.

Modern Coastal Living Room Ideas

Coastal Living Area in Soft Blues and Whites
Image courtesy of Kara Miller Interiors

4. Neutral Tones 

If you prefer a more subtle coastal look, opt for a neutral color palette with pops of color inspired by coastal elements. Use shades of sandy beige, browns, and soft grays as the base, and add coral, turquoise, or seafoam green accents to capture the essence of the beach.

Neutral Coastal Living Room

Coastal Living Room in Sandy Hues
Image courtesy of M.Elle Design

5. Soft Blues and Crisp Whites 

This classic coastal color combination mimics the colors of the ocean and the sky. Use light blue and white shades for the walls, furniture, and accessories to create a fresh and airy feel.

Soft Blues and Crisp Whites

Soft Blues and Crisp Whites
Image courtesy of Kara Miller Interiors

6. Cool Greens and Earthy Browns

Consider using cool greens and earthy browns for a coastal vibe that leans towards a tropical oasis. These colors mimic the lush vegetation and sandy beaches in tropical coastal destinations. Use shades of green and brown for your furniture and accessories, and complement them with touches of white for a fresh and vibrant look.

Modern Coastal Decorating Ideas

Modern Coastal Living Room with Shades of Green
Image courtesy of Sarah Richardson Design

7. Wicker and Rattan Furniture 

Wicker and rattan furniture instantly evoke a coastal feel. The natural textures and light colors of these materials create a breezy and casual atmosphere. Add wicker baskets or rattan sofas, chairs, or coffee tables to your living room. 

Wicker and Rattan Furniture in Coastal Homes

Coastal Palm Beach Home
Image courtesy of Morgan Harrison Home

8. Large, Oversized Comfortable Seating

Choose comfortable sofas and chairs with soft, textured upholstery in light colors. Consider a large white sofa or sectional for a modern coastal design.

Coastal Decorating Ideas

Warm and Inviting Coastal Living Room
Image courtesy of Jennifer Wundrow Interiors

9. Slip-Covered Sofas and Chairs

Slip-covered sofas and chairs are practical and perfect for a coastal look. Choose light-colored slipcovers in shades of white, beige, or light blue to create a fresh and relaxed vibe. The slipcovers are also easy to clean, ideal for beach-inspired living rooms.

Coastal Home Decorating Ideas

Living Room with Slipcovered Sofa and Coastal Throw Pillows
Image courtesy of Ideal Home

10. Modern Coastal Living Room

For a modern coastal look with a lived-in feel, incorporate wooden beams, casual furnishings, hues of light blue, and contemporary furniture pieces.

Choose simple and sleek furniture pieces with clean lines and minimal ornamentation. Opt for upholstered sofas and chairs in light colors that feel modern and coastal. 

Using metallic accents like brass or copper is an elegant way to create a modern coastal feel. These accents can be incorporated into lighting fixtures, coffee tables, or decorative objects.

Contemporary Coastal Living Room

Contemporary Coastal Living Room
Image courtesy of Morgan Harrison Home

11. Large Coastal Coffee Table

Using a sizeable coastal coffee table can be a great addition to your coastal living room design. It can serve as a functional and stylish centerpiece, allowing you to display decorative items, books, snacks, and drinks. 

A large coffee table can also create a sense of balance and proportion in the room, especially if you have oversized furniture or a large living area. Additionally, a wooden or rattan coffee table is common in coastal interiors and can help tie together the overall theme of your living room.

Large Coffee Table

Large, Oversized Coffee Table
Image courtesy of Jennifer Wundrow Interiors

12. Nautical-Inspired Accents for a Beachy Vibe

Incorporating nautical-inspired accents into your living room is a great way to enhance the coastal theme in a beach house. Look for decor pieces like mirrors with rope framing, weathered lamps, and floral arrangements in whites and blues. These accents will add a touch of seaside charm to your space.

13. Seashells and Coral

Bring the beach indoors by displaying seashells and coral in glass jars or bowls. These natural elements add a touch of coastal elegance and remind you of the ocean’s beauty.

Nautical-Inspired Elements

Nautical-Inspired Elements
Image courtesy of Morgan Harrison Home

14. Coastal Throw Pillows and Blankets 

Swap out your regular throw pillows and blankets for ones with coastal-inspired patterns and colors. Look for designs featuring stripes, watercolor prints, and subtle patterns that mimic the ocean. 

Bringing in a wide variety of patterns is perfectly fine if you keep within the color palette. Throw a few solid pillows into the mix for visual balance. These accessories will instantly transform your sofa or chairs into cozy coastal nooks.

Mix and match patterns with a similar or complementary color palette. Combining different textures like linen, cotton, or burlap can add depth and interest to your coastal pillows.

15. Driftwood and Beachcomber Finds

Incorporate pieces of driftwood or beachcomber finds into your living room decor. These unique and weathered items add a rustic coastal charm and can be used as decorative accents or even turned into DIY projects.

Coastal Pillows and Blankets

Coastal Pillows & Throws
Image courtesy of Muskoka Living Design

16. Creating a Focal Point with Coastal Artwork

Artwork plays a significant role in creating a focal point and setting the tone for your coastal-themed living room. Choose pieces that reflect the beauty of the ocean and capture the essence of coastal living.