With record-high demand for spas, it would be easy for manufacturers to shelve product-improvement plans for a later date. Not Caldera Spas. Earlier this year, Caldera launched a redesign of its top line offering, helping to keep them at the forefront of consumer tastes and bringing them more in line with the overall brand.
Caldera has invested in one of the most important parts of the spa selling process for its dealers — catching the customers’ eyes on the showroom floor. To do that, the brand division of Watkins Wellness took a new approach to the Utopia series cabinetry, which now features a light bar. (Its Utopia Series spas were already amongst the most popular for dealers.) This summer, Caldera will also add a smaller 39-jet model within the Utopia Series called the Ravello.
Caitlin Woelfel, senior brand manager at Caldera Spas, says these relatively small changes address what the company’s customers were looking for in a hot tub.
“We believe it will be a big hit for the Caldera brand,” Woelfel says. “Design is an integral part of the Caldera Spas product philosophy. We saw an opportunity with the Utopia Series to evolve the design language in a way that elevates the entire brand while appealing to a broader customer base.”
Now, when consumers look across the series — from Vacanza to Paradise and Utopia — they will see a family of spas that complements a wide variety of backyard styles and designs. They can also rest comfortably knowing the interior of the Utopia spa series has not changed. The deep, sculpted seats of Pure Comfort seating remains intact, which plays right into the sales discussion at Backyard Leisure LLC.
“The ideal [Utopia] customer is someone who is ready to go all-in on their wellness,” says Josh Michels, senior wellness consultant at the Terre Haute, Indiana, dealership. “Often, these people are longtime hot tubbers who already know how they benefit from regular use. However, we also find many first-timers stepping up to these premium products, as long as we do a great job of discovering their needs and matching them to the tub that is going to give them the ultimate experience.”
The newer Utopia Series moves away from the older Avante cabinet and into a more streamlined and contemporary design that complements the rest of the brand: EcoTech Plus cabinets. They maintain the strong black header and stainless-steel trim that have come to be associated with Caldera’s premium offering, and now features an LED light bar tucked under the stainless-steel trim, a woodgrain accent and multidimensional ribbing for texture and interest.
Woelfel says the redesigned Utopia Series represents Caldera’s “commitment to offer the best looking, most comfortable spas available.”
Other improvements include a modern black footer that matches the header and an updated logo light. Dealers say that while the Utopia Series spas are great at starting the sales conversation, astute buyers looking for the full package also appreciate that they are high-performance contemporary products.
The Utopia Series has always been Caldera’s premium product because of its focus on comfortable seating, well-engineered massage and design expression — and Michels is even more excited to present the updated spas to his customers because the selling process just got a little easier.
“Customer feedback has been very positive,” he says. “The current design trend is toward a more simplified and streamlined look. This redesign accomplishes that but also gives the Utopia Series some striking features that catch the customer’s eye and set it apart from other offerings.”
Paul Madden, vice president at Water by Design in Roanoke, Virginia, also credits the new design for having a positive impact on sales.
“Customers love the new cabinet,” Madden says. “We had some wait longer for the new cabinets because they wanted the new design. They look great and are extremely durable.”