The photo seems to be set to "private" and can't be viewed (at least for me).
Personally, painting the hearth white is not not the ideal solution as it will show all types of dirt and stains.
With that aside, the fireplace is a integral part of a home and one that you look at daily. It has to look good to you.
As for the face you don't have to "devalue" the existing brick. You can easily add faux brick panels (or stone) on top of the existing materials. We constantly see a lot of happy customers remodeling fireplaces in that manner.
What kind of material do you have currently on the face?
[url=http://www.anticoelements.com]Fake Stone Panels[/url]
[url=http://www.anticoelements.com/villa-brick-veneer/292-villa-faux-bricks-white.html]Imitation Or Faux Brick Panels[/url]