Best hot tubs 2021: the hot and wet spa essential for the swinging set

Bring a touch of, ahem, luxury to your home with the best hot tubs for garden-based relaxation this summer

Best hot tubs

The best hot tubs used to be seen as a luxury item that people could only dream of owning one day. Nowadays, they are more like an item that people just own, with everything from inexpensive inflatable home spas to more expensive classic Jacuzzis to choose between. In recent months they have peaked in popularity. As a result, many of the tubs below are no longer available, and it's not clear when new stocks will arrive. However, we have compiled a handy guide to where to find the best hot tub deals online. It's a limited choice, but there are some excellent Lay-Z-Spa and Canadian Spa Co options in there…

Garden hot tubs: what you need to know

Some hot tubs require lengthy installations, however we’ve managed to pick out a range of the best hot tubs that don’t require that much fuss below, so you can simply plug and play, turning your garden into a luxury spa in an instant. 

Depending on the level of luxury you’re going for you can get hot tubs with different jet speeds, mood lighting and even built in sound systems. But before you get too excited, there are a few things you need to consider when purchasing the best hot tub for your garden. 

Space is the obvious factor. Ensure you have plenty of space to fit the hot tub, as well as easy access to the power source and enough room to safely get in and out of the hot tub. Some hot tubs need to be installed on a pedestal so that it is not directly touching the ground, but many inflatable or “pop up” hot tubs don’t require this kind of groundwork. However, it may be in your best interest to place your hot tub on decking or patio in order to protect your grass. 

If you want a little more versatility from your hot tub, then swim spas are also a popular choice for gardens. These are somewhere between a Jacuzzi and a swimming pool, allowing for both exercise and relaxation. Most hot tubs and spas can accommodate between four and eight people and usually come with a step and cover to keep your hot tub in pristine condition. 

We’ve picked out some of the best hot tubs on the market that can transform your garden into a luxury spa, not just for the summer but, as long as you're fairly hardy, the whole year round…

The best hot tubs for all budgets

Best hot tubs: Bestway Lay-Z-Spa Miami Hot Tub

1. Bestway Lay-Z-Spa Miami Hot Tub

The best budget hot tub - and it won’t take up too much space

Best for: Convenience
Seats: 2-4
Capacity: 800 L
Jets: 81
Dimensions: HWD 65x180x180cm
Reasons to buy
+Soft-touch control panel+Easy to clean
Reasons to avoid
- A bit of a squeeze for 4

We have a number of luxury hot tubs below for bigger budgets, but when it comes to affordability, we think the popular Bestway Lay-Z-Spa Miami Hot Tub is the best hot tub you can buy.

This inflatable hot tub has rave reviews from customers. It’s slightly smaller than some of the other options in our best hot tub guide, seating up to four people (although customers have said it’s more like three at a push), and it doesn’t come with the fancy lighting of its more advanced sibling - the Bestway Lay-Z-Spa Paris hot tub, below. But you get a very similar air jet system, and the fast and easy set up that you get with the more expensive model.

The Bestway Lay-Z-Spa Miami Hot Tub boasts a sturdy construction, reducing the risk of puncture or leakage. You can expect this hot tub to stand the test of time in your back garden, and at less than £400 it's fantastic value.

You can compare this hot top to another top competitor in our Bestway Lay-Z-Spa Miami vs Bestway Lay-Z-Spa Helsinki comparison feature.

Bestway Lay-Z-Spa Helsinki Hot Tub best hot tubs 2021

2. Bestway Lay-Z-Spa Helsinki Hot Tub

A luxury hot tub for bigger budgets

Best for: Inflatable all-year round
Seats: 7
Capacity: 1123L
Jets: 87
Dimensions: HWD 66x180x180cm
Reasons to buy
+Inflatable can be used all year+Looks good+Comfortable+Good price
Reasons to avoid
-7 people would feel crowded

The Helsinki AirJet from Lay-Z-Spa is a Nordic inspired inflatable hot tub which can be used all year-round thanks to the innovative Freeze Shield technology. It's easy to set up and features a rapid heating system, which will heat the water to a toasty 40-degrees centigrade (or less, if you desire). You and up to six (at a squeeze) of your friends or family will be enjoying the 87 Airjet massage system in no time.

But it's the Freeze Shield tech which is the star of the show here, allowing you to use the hot tub on the coldest winter nights. It keeps the pump running at all times in a power saving mode, stopping the water from freezing in the pipes and motor. This, coupled with a durable drop stitch construction, insulating inflatable lid, and a realistic wooden design, make it a great alternative to an acrylic spa.

Best hot tubs: Canadian Spa Winnipeg Hot Tub

3. Canadian Spa Winnipeg Hot Tub

Just like the real deal but with no lengthy installation

Best for: Acrylic Hot Tub
Seats: 6
Capacity: 895L
Jets: 35
Dimensions: HWD 80x198x198cm
Reasons to buy
+Mp3 audio system+Underwater LED lighting
Reasons to avoid
-Manual is limited

This acrylic hot tub is probably the closest thing you’ll get to a real Jacuzzi in your garden. It seats up to 6 people with a whopping 35 jets including 5 hydro-massage seat jets for maximum luxury. It comes equipped with an Mp3 sound system and LED lighting to complete the look, meaning you can expect to throw some awesome garden parties with this hot tub. The best thing about it is this hot tub doesn’t require any lengthy installation, so if you want to do it yourself you can. Users say the manual is a little limited but this hot tub is simply plug and play and most have had no issues with set up. 

Best hot tubs: Bestway Lay-Z-Spa Paris Hot Tub

4. Bestway Lay-Z-Spa Paris Hot Tub

A luxury inflatable for hassle-free relaxation

Best for: Luxury inflatable
Seats: 6
Capacity: 945L
Jets: 87
Dimensions: HWD 66x196x196cm
Reasons to buy
+Looks fantastic at night+Easy set up DVD
Reasons to avoid
-Seats more like 4 than 6 

If an acrylic hot tub is a little too big of an investment for you right now, then the Lay-Z-Spa is the next best thing you can buy. This inflatable hot tub is easy to set up with a clear instructional DVD and this particular model is loved by customers for its atmospheric multi-coloured lighting, which makes it the ideal place to wind down in the evenings. Users have said it accommodates 4 people comfortably but 6 can be a bit of a squeeze, although not completely impossible. You can run both the heaters and the bubbles at the same time and it can be controlled via a wireless remote. 

Best hot tubs: Intex Octagonal Pure Spa

5. Intex Octagonal Pure Spa

Bring the spa to your home with this super-bubbly hot tub

Best for: Home spa
Seats: 4
Capacity: 795L
Jets: 120
Dimensions: HWD 71x201x201cm
Reasons to buy
+Lots of jets+Easy to maintain
Reasons to avoid
-Not the most stylish

This hot tub has a whopping 120 jets which users say recreates a proper Jacuzzi-style spa in their home. It has adjustable temperature between 20 and 40 degrees centigrade and a control panel to set the performance of the bubbles. It’s not the most stylish (we’re still undecided on the beige colour), but although it doesn’t have LED lighting, this spa is one of the most powerful inflatables on the list.

Best hot tubs: Bestway Lay-Z-Spa Monaco Hot Tub

6. Bestway Lay-Z-Spa Monaco Hot Tub

A large hot tub for those summer garden parties

Best for: Garden parties
Seats: 8
Capacity: 1540L
Jets: 80
Dimensions: HWD 137x500x228cm
Reasons to buy
+Large capacity+Easy to inflate and deflate
Reasons to avoid
-Requires a lot of water

Lay-Z-Spa makes a third entry onto our list with the Monaco hot tub. This one is the largest of all the tubs on our list, seating up to 8 people and this time customers say it’s true to size. If you want to have friends over for parties this summer, then this hot tub, despite its size, is still simple to inflate and deflate as and when you need to, but remember it will require a lot more water than the smaller models. 

Best hot tubs: Canadian Spa St Lawrence Deluxe Swim HotTub

7. Canadian Spa St Lawrence Deluxe Swim HotTub

A deluxe swim spa for exercise and relaxation

Best for: Swim spa
Seats: 6
Capacity: 6475L
Jets: 71
Dimensions: HWD 137x500x228cm
Reasons to buy
+Room to swim +Hard top cover
Reasons to avoid
-Incredibly pricey

This Canadian Swim Spa is pretty pricey but if you’re looking for pure luxury then this is it. It says it only seats 6 people, despite being the largest tub, but this means you can expect to have your own personal space intact when relaxing in this tub. The idea of this swim spa is also to allow you to swim if you’d prefer. The swim spa can be separated into two sections so you can use the hot tub section on its own on some occasions if preferred. The jets provide a swim current so you can practice resistance swimming in this pool, and you get all the swish extras including Mp3 sound system and LED lighting. Worth the money if you’ve got it. 

Best hot tubs: M-Spa Inflatable Bubble Spa

8. M-Spa Inflatable Bubble Spa

A simple yet effective hot tub for a touch of garden luxury

Best for: Budget buy
Seats: 4
Capacity: 700 litres
Jets: 108
Dimensions: HWD 68x158x158cm
Reasons to buy
+Surprisingly powerful+User friendly 
Reasons to avoid
-Not the biggest 

If you have been thinking about trying out a hot tub but don’t want to splash too much cash, then users have said great things about this basic spa from Tesco. It boasts no frills such as LED lights or sound systems, but it is surprisingly powerful with over 100 jets that are designed to help you relax and are said to work wonders for joint pain. This is the cheapest hot tub on the list, but you can expect excellent value for money in its durability and ease of use.