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10 Swim Spa Installation Ideas + 4 Requirements Before You Spend Your Money

Swim spas, pools, and tubs are some of the most popular forms of relaxation and entertainment in the US. Here are some stats to back this up:

With the high number of spas in many homes and locations, it should be obvious that there are enough ideas you can use for inspiration when installing yours. This article looks at 15 of the best swim spa installation ideas to help you decide how to place yours.

But first, let's look at how you should plan for the installation and some key requirements before spending your money.

Your Swim Spa Installation Planning
Your Swim Spa Installation Planning

Planning for your Swim Spa Installation

Planning your swim spa installation is when you will decide on the location of the unit. You will also need to decide other things like whether you want to keep it inside or outside and how your want it to sit on the surface.

Should you have your swim spa inside or outside your home?

Ultimately whether you have the spa inside or outside depends on your preferences and the space available. Other factors like weather, maintenance, privacy, and design of the swim spa will influence this decision.

If you live in an area with harsh weather, such as a lot of rain or wind, an outdoor spa might provide unique challenges, and hence an indoor model may be preferable. Also, indoor pools are ideal if you want more privacy and an easy time during maintenance as they are easier to keep clean.

On the other hand, outside is the perfect swim spa installation for those that want to relax and unwind out in the sun.

Should you go for above-ground, partially in-ground, or recessed?

While above-ground swim spa installations are the most common, they are not the only option. Many spa owners only prefer them because they are easier and relatively cheaper. Also, the above-ground installations make it easy to move the spa in case you need to in the future.

As you plan for your spa installation, you have to decide which method to use, and here the other options are partially in-ground, in-ground, and recessed spa installations. Partially-inground means you have to excavate a little bit, and it creates a lot of sitting space around the perimeter of the spa.

The recessed installation allows you to enjoy the benefits of in-ground installation without doing any excavation. This style can also be referred to as deck installation, as it entails building a deck around a partially in-ground spa to make it look like it is completely in-ground.

Top 4 Swim Spa Installation Requirements

Here are 4 basic requirements you need to keep in mind to ensure you get a safe and beautiful swim spa installation:

  1. Never Compromise on the Base - Whether you plan to install the swim spa above or in-ground, it is essential to ensure you have a solid base that can take its weight. The base also needs to be level and well compacted. A concrete pad does the best job, but other spa and hot tub pad types can still create a good enough base.
  2. Leave Enough Clearance Around the Spa - Ensure there is enough space around the spa for use when getting in and out and for servicing the unit. It is always good to leave a few extra feet on each side of the spa and leave even more space where the inside components are located for easy access. Even if you opt for a deck around your swim spa, make sure the design allows you access the internal components.
  3. Account for the Delivery - Whether the spa will be installed directly from a trailer or will have to be hoisted by a crane, you have to account for this and ensure there is enough room. If the space is not easily accessible, the swim spa installation cost can increase as the installer might require additional equipment.
  4. Dedicated Power Source - Your spa will need a reliable power source, and so you should plan for this before it is delivered or start worrying about how much it will cost to run the swim spa. Have a licensed electrician examine your connection to determine if it can handle the spa's power requirements and set up the necessary outlets and install a breaker box for the spa.  
Ideas for Swim Spa Installation

10 Best Swim Spa Installation Ideas

1. Edge of Deck Installations

Edge of deck installation is a popular swim spa design. Many people prefer this installation idea as it allows them to enjoy the appeal of a raised deck spa installation while still accessing the spa for servicing easily.

2. Half and Half Installations

The half and half installations look more like full inground installations, but they still provide easy access for maintenance. Also, they leave some room for you to add landscaping to your backyard.

3. Swim Spa with Raised Base

A swim spa with a raised base is an amazing swim spa installation when you want to add some appeal to your stand-alone spa instead of just living it plain. You should place the spa on a concrete slab and use wood planks to create steps for the base. Also, if you have enough space, you can add some flowers around the base for extra beauty.

patio with spa

4. Swim Spa on a Patio

Installing a swim spa on your patio is a good way to add some life to a rather dull patio. Also, it will give you something extra to do when relaxing on the patio. Here you can choose to have it fully inground so that the top will be flush with your patio for easy on and off.

5. Swim Spa with Pergola

Pergolas are an excellent way to add elegance to your backyard. You can take things a notch higher by installing your swim spa with a pergola. This install looks best for an above-ground spa with a deck around it, and the pergola can also provide some shade from the direct sun.

6. Sun Room/Indoor Installations 

If you want to install your swim spa indoors, plenty of ideas are also available. This inspiring swim spa installation idea will be perfect if you want to use the spa all year round or your backyard is unsuitable for swimming spa installation.

PDC Spa with stones

7. Rocky Swim Spa

If your backyard has a rocky theme, you can enhance the style by installing an above-ground or partially inground spa with a rocky frame. You can further improve this mesmerizing swim spa installation by placing some huge rocks randomly around the backyard.

8. Rustic Swim Spa

Sometimes it is not always how you install your spa but rather how you finish the areas around it. Giving the surrounding a rustic look with some rustic-looking wood can work out pretty well. Also, this idea can work for both outdoor and indoor swim spa installations.

9. Classic Above Ground Swim Spa

An above-ground swim spa is one of the least challenging swim spa installations as there is no excavation. Also, you can do a complete swim spa installation in just a few hours as there is nothing much to do besides placing the spa on a base. Sometimes keeping things classic can be all you need to create a stunning swim spa installation. Simply having a partially in-ground swim spa with a concrete or brick frame can be enough to make your spa look stylish. This idea can save you a lot of money.

recessed swim spa

10. Recessed Swim Spa

Having a fully surrounding deck around a swim spa can make it feel more high-end like an inground swimming pool. This also allows for easier access when entering and exiting the water.


Swim spa installation is highly personal because how you choose to install yours largely depends on your tastes and preferences. However, other factors like your space and whether you are installing it inside or outside can influence your decisions.

Luckily, there are countless examples of swim spa installations, and the 15 above should be a perfect starting point for your hunt for the best sap install idea.

Also, check out our Swim Spas vs. Hot Tubs article if you are still trying to decide between a hot tub and a swim spa.

If you still have any other questions on swim spa installation, reach out to Epic Hot Tubs for a free consultation!

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