Many hot tub owners can’t resist the allure of urban life: the city lights, plenty of unique restaurants, live music and entertainment venues steps away from home, and more. But some believe they’d have to give up their spas to make the move. After all, one thing that cities tend to be short on is space. While you might have to trade in your large spa or leave it behind, many of today’s small hot tubs are designed with city dwellers in mind. If you love the urban lifestyle just as much as you love the convenience and benefits of your spa, choosing a new, small hot tub that will fit on an urban balcony, in a townhouse backyard, or even on a rooftop deck is easy. Here’s everything you need to know when shopping for a small spa to enjoy in a big city.
CHOOSING A SMALL HOT TUB THAT’S PERFECT FOR YOUR URBAN LIFESTYLE AND SPACE
Life in a city is exciting, with no shortage of things to do. Over time, though, the frantic pace could wear you down. A home hot tub is a great investment for urban dwellers, offering opportunities to rest, recharge, and reconnect whenever you desire in the convenience of your own home. A warm-water soak and the soothing, massaging jets of your spa can help to relieve stress, pain, and soreness after a full day of work and shopping or a night of dancing. For athletes and those who bike to work, a spa offers sore muscle relief before and after exercise. By increasing your body temperature a couple of hours before bed, your spa can also help you sleep better.
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Hot Spring® offers many spa models, including a few small hot tubs that are the ideal size for city apartments. The Hot Spot® Collection TX spa is a two-person hot tub with a footprint of 6' x 6' x 29". Its rounded triangular shape makes it perfect for a balcony corner. The slightly larger Hot Spot Collection SX spa fits three adults and has a footprint of 6' x 6' x 33". The Highlife® Collection Jetsetter® spa with a footprint of 7' x 5'5" x 29" and the Highlife Collection Jetsetter LX spa with a 7' x 5'5" x 33" footprint, also fit three adults and include a lounger. Finally, the four-person Limelight® Collection Beam™ spa, with a 6’ 8” x 6’ 8” x 33” footprint, offers corner seats, each with a different hydrotherapy option.
Each 110v model above can also be directly wired to create a 220v, 230v, or 240v hot tub, which heats more quickly, if your building unit or townhome supports 220v to 240v wiring. If the circuit breaker box in your home has double pole breakers—circuit breakers that take up two slots—then a directly wired connection is possible.
Condos, high-rise buildings, and many townhouse complexes and planned communities have homeowners’ associations (HOAs)—governing bodies that make and enforce the rules of the properties. You’ll need to get hot tub guidelines and permission from your association (more on this below) before choosing the spa that’s right for your new urban lifestyle.
Learn how entertainment, lighting, and water care features will enhance your urban spa experience.
WHERE AND HOW WILL YOU AND INSTALL YOUR SMALL HOT TUB?
In addition to choosing the best way to power your hot tub, you’ll also need to consider the best placement for your spa and the proper ventilation and draining requirements. If your urban home is a townhome or row house with a backyard, spa ventilation and drainage shouldn’t be much of a concern. Steam from the hot tub will dissipate into the atmosphere and you can drain the spa into the earth or into a drain you install. If you’re placing a hot tub on a balcony, inside a high-rise apartment, or even on a rooftop deck, you’ll have to make adjustments for proper drainage.
Because high-rise buildings are reinforced with a combination of cement, masonry, and steel, outdoor surfaces shouldn’t be vulnerable to hot tub steam. But filling and draining a spa placed on a balcony will mean running a hose from a faucet to the hot tub to fill it, and from the spa to your bathtub to drain it.
One of the biggest challenges when placing a hot tub in a high rise apartment or on a balcony or deck is getting it upstairs. Typically, small hot tubs can fit in the elevators and through the doorways and corridors of most high-rises. Larger hot tubs will need to be moved on service elevators or through the use of a crane. It’s recommended you leave the installation of your new spa to your dealer, who has experience using heavy equipment to move spas.
CLEAR YOUR SMALL HOT TUB WITH YOUR HOA OR CONDO ASSOCIATION
Once you’ve chosen your new spa and know exactly where you want to put it, you’ll need to get approval from your HOA or condo association. To ensure that the area in which you want to place your hot tub will support its weight, hire a structural engineer to inspect your unit. Once you pass inspection, you’ll need to provide that info to your insurance company and get a quote for coverage before submitting everything to your HOA board. The process will be quicker if you provide complete paperwork proving that the hot tub you plan to purchase is a safe addition to your unit and that it’s insured.
Approval from your homeowners’ association could take a few weeks, depending on how frequently the board meets, and you might have to answer questions from the board during that time. But once you obtain permission, you can schedule an installation date with your spa dealer.
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Even in a bustling urban area, you can reap all of the benefits of a home spa. By shopping smart and pre-planning, you can enjoy daily soaks with city views in the sunshine or under the stars.
We have manufactured top-quality hot tubs for over 40 years and we’re committed to our customers living in both suburban and urban areas. For help in finding a Hot Spring® spa that’s perfect for your lifestyle no matter where you call home, contact a dealer near you.