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Customizing Your Backyard Hot Tub for Privacy and Style
Customizing Your Backyard Hot Tub for Privacy and Style

Customizing Your Backyard Hot Tub for Privacy and Style

August 18, 2023

Backyard hot tubs can be a great way to relax at home, but customizing your setup is key for both privacy and creating an aesthetically pleasing environment. This article will provide tips for decorating your hot tub, building fences, constructing access steps, maintaining water chemistry, adding entertainment features, maximizing energy efficiency, and budgeting for your project. With some creativity and DIY skills, you can customize your backyard hot tub oasis perfectly suited for your needs.

Choosing the Right Size Hot Tub

One of the first decisions for your custom hot tub project is choosing the right size tub. Consider how many people will regularly use the hot tub. Larger tubs can fit more people, with two-person tubs good for couples and five to six person tubs better for families. Also, measure the planned deck or patio area for the tub to ensure ample walkway space around the edges. Standard hot tubs are about 8-feet long, but longer oval tubs allow people to fully stretch out and relax. For more compact spaces, smaller round hot tubs can fit better.

Decorating Your Hot Tub for Ambiance

Your backyard hot tub decorating area can provide both privacy and create an aesthetically pleasing, tranquil environment ideal for relaxation. From constructing custom access steps to installing decorative lighting to planting lush greenery, there are many creative hot tub decorating ideas you can implement to customize your backyard oasis perfectly suited to your personal style, taste, and needs for privacy. Here are some of the top ways to decorate your hot tub surroundings for optimal ambiance, comfort, and seclusion.

1. Constructing Custom Hot Tub Steps

Installing custom access steps makes getting in and out of your above-ground hot tub much easier and safer. The ideal step height is around 5-6 inches tall. The steps should be at least as wide as your hot tub model to provide ample room. Use textured, slip-resistant materials like stone, tile, or composite decking for secure footing.

For wooden decks, build wide wooden stair steps going about halfway up the side of the hot tub. This creates a nice aesthetic. For stone patios, use large stone slabs or irregular rock treads that match the patio material. Coordinating with existing hardscaping creates a cohesive look.

If installing an extra long hot tub, construct steps at both ends for convenient access from either side. Custom steps tailored to your unique hot tub installation and backyard style result in form and function.

2. Perimeter Bar Seating for Storage and Gathering

Add bar stool height seating around the outer perimeter of your hot tub to provide space to set drinks, store towels and other items within arm's reach while using the tub. Bar seating also creates an inviting space for people to sit and chat when entertaining, without having to be in the tub. Use stone, brick, or dark colored wood posts or pillars to add the bar stool seats. Match the material to your steps for continuity.

3. Patio Furniture for Relaxation and Entertaining

Include patio furniture like benches, egg chairs, cushion sets, bistro tables, or dining sets in your backyard hot tub area to create additional spaces for relaxation or entertaining. Benches and egg chairs add chic seating for small gatherings. Deep cushion patio sets create a cozy lounge space. Bistro or dining tables allow for eating, drinks and games when hosting larger groups. Choose furniture in styles and colors that complement your overall backyard aesthetic.

4. Ambient Lighting for Evening Atmosphere

Incorporate lighting like string lights, path lighting, lamp posts, lanterns and tiki torches around your hot tub to cast a warm glow for enjoyable nighttime soaking. Position path lighting on steps and walkways for safety and illumination. Use post or wall-mounted lanterns and strings of Edison bulbs overhead to add laidback vibes. Flickering firelight from tiki torches can create tropical resort ambiance. Lighting transforms the mood and extends usage hours.

5. Fire Features for Four Season Enjoyment

Install a fire pit or propane fire table to extend enjoyment of your backyard hot tub during all seasons. Custom designed fire pits made of natural stone match patios and give off radiating warmth. Portable fire tables fueled by propane are versatile for placement and emit cozy heat. Position your fire feature near the hot tub to soak in the soothing ambiance and dancing flames from the tub. Gather around the fire for relaxation and connection year-round.

6. Lush Greenery for Privacy and Zen

Plant trees, bushes, flowers and aromatic herbs around your hot tub perimeter to boost privacy while also adding vibrant colors, pleasant scents and a peaceful, zen vibe. Tall varieties with wide leaves like bamboo or fiddle leaf figs create secluded screening. Bushes like azaleas and rhododendrons add brilliant color in season. Fragrant lavender, jasmine and rosemary release stress-reducing aromas. Choose plants that thrive in your climate to maintain lushness year-round.

7. Building a Privacy Fence for Hot Tub

Installing a privacy fence around your hot tub is an ideal way to boost seclusion. A 6-foot tall wooden privacy fence placed around 3 sides of the hot tub allows you to still enjoy any existing view from the open direction. Use similar wood, composite, vinyl or iron fencing materials that coordinate with your current backyard fence for a cohesive look. Adding a locking gate also improves security and controls access.

Get creative with steps, seating, lighting, plantings, and structures to craft your perfect hot tub oasis tailored to your taste. The decor possibilities are endless for your backyard paradise.

Keeping Your Hot Tub Water Balanced

Properly maintaining the chemical balance of your hot tub water is crucial for preventing bacteria growth and mineral buildup that can damage your hot tub. Regularly test and adjust the levels of key water balance factors like chlorine, pH and alkalinity.

Read more: What Chemicals is Good for Hot Tub? 6 Must-Have

Cyanuric Acid in Hot Tub

The chlorine stabilizer chemical cyanuric acid helps maintain proper chlorine sanitizer levels longer against UV rays in outdoor hot tubs. What is cyanuric acid? Cyanuric acid is a chlorine stabilizer that acts as a sunblock for the sanitizing chlorine in your hot tub water. It prevents the chlorine from rapidly degrading in sunlight.

Most dichlor and trichlor chlorine compounds already contain some cyanuric acid. But do you need to add extra cyanuric acid to your hot tub? If using other forms of chlorine, you will likely need to add cyanuric acid separately in order to sufficiently stabilize the chlorine against UV rays.

Draining and refilling your hot tub 3-4 times per year helps replenish the water's mineral content for a fresh start. Consider installing an automatic water monitoring system for convenience. Proper water balance through testing and chemicals keeps your hot tub clean and healthy.

Creating a Hot Tub Entertainment Center

To enhance your hot tub experience, create an entertainment center around it.

  • Mount a waterproof TV on the wall or gazebo pole nearby so you can watch shows or sports from the tub.
  • Install outdoor speakers connected to your audio system for listening to music.
  • Place a small beverage cooler or mini fridge close by for cold drinks and snacks.
  • Add a storage bench for towels and a small table for convenience within arm's reach.
  • A storage box for hot tub toys and supplies keeps everything organized.
  • For connectivity, install WiFi extenders if the signal is weak outside.

Energy Efficiency for Hot Tubs

There are several ways to make your hot tub setup more energy efficient. Choose an Energy Star certified energy efficient hot tub model or retrofit an existing tub with an insulation wrap. Be sure to use a thick insulating cover when the hot tub is not in use to retain heat. Set the hot tub's heater to a lower temperature around 90-100°F when you are not using it frequently. Using an automated timer to run the hot tub filtration cycles during off-peak electricity rate hours can also help efficiency. Additionally, look into solar heating systems to harness renewable energy and offset operating costs.

Budgeting for a Hot Tub Project

Creating a backyard hot tub oasis does require some upfront investment. But understanding the factors that influence hot tub costs allows you to budget accordingly.

The price is primarily driven by size, capacity, features, and quality. Basic smaller hot tubs for 2-4 people start around $3,000. High-end luxury models seating 6+ with advanced features can cost $15,000 or more.

For an exceptional mid-range model offering luxury features at an affordable price, consider Empava SPA3550 Luxury Freestanding 6-Person Whirlpool Outdoor Hot Tub. This freestanding outdoor hot tub comfortably seats up to 6 adults, making it ideal for couples, families, and entertaining small groups. The spacious interior provides room to stretch out and relax while powerful jets soothe away tension.

Larger hot tub capacity for more people and more features equals a higher price tag. But bigger is not always better if it doesn't match your needs. Focus on the size and features that suit your lifestyle.

Installation, delivery, site prep, maintenance, utilities, and add-ons like entertainment systems also add to costs. But proper planning allows you to create your affordable dream oasis.

Determine the right hot tub size and design for your personal needs. Select features wisely to enrich the experience while keeping affordability in mind. And factor in ongoing costs. With forethought, you can tailor the perfect hot tub sanctuary within your budget.


Customizing your backyard hot tub design, features, and surrounding space results in an at-home oasis perfect for relaxation, entertainment, and spending quality time. With some upfront planning and investment, you can tailor your hot tub area for privacy, aesthetics, accessibility, proper operation, and enjoyment for years to come. Be creative and thoughtful in your hot tub project to maximize the benefits you'll experience.

Creating a Truly Custom Hot Tub

For the ultimate backyard hot tub experience, consider having a fully customized hot tub built just for your space and needs. Custom hot tubs allow you to select specialized features like depth, shape, seating capacity, jet placement, and materials. Work with an experienced hot tub manufacturer to design a one-of-a-kind hot tub configuration perfect for your yard and lifestyle.

Options for customization include irregular long oval shapes to fit a unique patio space, built-in benches for ergonomic seating, extra powerful jets targeting sore muscles, and durable maintenance-free composite materials. Choose a larger capacity for entertaining or a deeper tub for soaking and swimming jets. The sky's the limit when fully customizing your hot tub design.

Of course, custom hot tubs come at a higher price due to the research, specialized construction, and handcrafted process. But the end result is an exclusive hot tub tailored exactly to your family’s needs and backyard vision. For those seeking a truly unique hot tub experience, investing in a fully customized design is the way to go.

Contact the experts at Empava today at support@ibathtub.com to start creating your dream custom hot tub sanctuary. Their experienced team can help you design the perfect hot tub for your home.

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