Swim spa line offers quality construction, palatable prices
By Jim Raposa
Jeff Davis, president of California-based Turbo Spas, has a passion for the product he and business partner Ross Herman, vice president and owner/operator of Sedona Spas in Phoenix, Arizona, build and sell. Davis and Herman boast over 60 years combined experience in the spa industry. Davis jokes that much of that time is on his resume. “I’m the oldest youngest guy in the spa business,” Davis says. Davis got his start at 13, in 1976, working with his dad at Spa Expo in Dublin, California.
The father-son business model proved rocky. “My dad and I never got along well in business,” Davis says. “He’d turn the wrench one way and I’d turn it the other.” In 1989, he accepted a managerial position with Advanced Spas (which is now L.A. Spas), launched Turbo Spas in 1991 and moved into manufacturing in 2011. “We overbuild our spas,” Davis says. “The frame is built like a house. We do it that way because it’s easier to build it right in the factory than it is to fix it in the field.”
Turbo Spas has just unveiled its new swim spa line, the Eco Series, available in 12- and 16-foot models. The 12-footer features 22 jets and one River Jet; the 16-foot model has 26 jets and one River Jet. Why only one River Jet? It’s a less-is-more thing, Davis says. “I’ve experimented with as many as four River Jets in a spa, and I can actually get more turbulence and pressure out of just one,” he says. “That’s one reason the Eco Series provides the best bang for your buck. I know it’s contrarian thinking; people see swim spas with three or four River Jets, priced at $30,000. Our Eco Series swim spa performs better than the higher-priced appliance — for much less.”
The construction techniques that go into building the spa shell is something Davis calls the “Dam Wall Effect.”
“We hourglass our spa shell in construction,” Davis says. “By building the walls of our spas like a dam, an hourglass, when you put (water) pressure on that wall, it isn’t going to move. Many manufacturers will just blow fiberglass on their spa shells.” Its process uses 24-ounce woven rope on the sidewalls — the same material used on boat hulls to keep a boat as rigid as possible. “This matting is our last coat of fiberglass,” he says. “It’s placed on and rolled out by hand. The result is as firm and rigid a spa shell as you can find.”
That attention to construction detail and quality equates to a 10-year, no-hassle warranty on the spa shell.
There’s plenty of room to splash or chill out in the Eco Series swim spas, too. At 51 inches deep and with lots of legroom in the seating area, a customer has ample room for relaxation or performing swim exercises in either the 12- or 16-foot models. There are optional light show, second
controller and exercise equipment after-market packages available.
Turbo Spas dealers have a lot to love, Davis says, which is why he’s quickly signing up stores. The suggested retail on the 12-foot model is $11,900, Davis says; on the 16-foot model, $13,900. “At the end of the day, it’s about delivering the most value for a customer’s hard-earned dollar,” he says, “and giving dealers an opportunity to have a fun, profitable business.”