I visited the Seattle Home Show during opening weekend… wow! Acres and acres of exhibits and loads of interesting seminars.
Rich’s for the Home has the largest exhibit at the show (#305-311 and 417-423, on the south end of Qwest Field Event Center).
I was instantly drawn to the hot tubs. Fifteen out of the 29 models of Clearwater Spas that Rich’s carries are at the show, and all of them are on sale for up to 50% off.
The best deal at the show is a Limited Edition spa that comes with a gazebo.
Here are some of the $1,600 worth of free add-ons you get with this 6-seater Clearwater Spa and Gazebo:
Digital lighting package (for ambiance)
RIM System cabinetry (Robot Injected Molding) – Designed exclusively for Clearwater Spas, this cabinet is the most durable of all spa cabinetry. It’s “Hummer resistant” – they actually drove a Hummer over the top of a cabinet corner piece, and it didn’t crack or get damaged! It’s also the only synthetic cabinet that accepts paint or stain, so you can keep your cabinetry looking brand new for years.
The gazebo has real glass windows and a snow load-bearing roof.
The Limited Edition package is $9,999. A superb deal, considering the gazebo alone retails for $6,300 and the spa retails for $6,500 (without all the extras).
You’ll find the best deals of the year on spas, stoves and fireplaces, and patio furniture at Rich’s Seattle Home Show exhibit.
The show runs through February 28 and is open the following hours:
Mid-February might seem like a strange time to think about outdoor furniture, but in reality, now is the perfect time to dream, plan, and yes – order – your furnishings for spring and summer.
I chatted with Mark Gorr, vice president of sales and marketing at Tropitone, and he shared some insider tips about outdoor furnishings that are going to be hot here in the Pacific Northwest this season:
“The industry is moving toward more contemporary products, and we believe this modern group, available in sling and padded sling, is going to be very strong,” says Mark.
I love the casual, yet sturdy design that features a double curve in the back and wide, flat arms. Pictured is an ergonomically-shaped sling seat with built-in lumbar support – perfect for relaxing my sore back.
With its gracefully curved aluminum slats, this modern collection seems to float on air. Windsor Collection
Tropitone is adding cushioned dining chairs, sofa, loveseat, and lounge chairs to this collection… and for the first time, a cushioned bar stool. This versatile, comfortable collection would look great on my patio.
In terms of finishes, Almond Silk – a light earth tone with flecks -- is new and expected to be very popular.
If you don’t see exactly what you’re looking for on our showroom floor, we’ll help you place a special orderin your favorite finish and fabric. That way, your new outdoor furniture will be delivered and ready to use on our first lovely spring day.
The gas fireplace industry is also going green. Travis Industries (manufacturer of Avalon, Lopi, and FPX brands), has developed a GreenSmart™ System that uses the latest technology to help you heat your home cleaner and greener.
GreenSmart fireplaces, stoves, and inserts come equipped with a “dashboard” – located under the front of the fireplace – that you operate manually. When you open the concealment door, the control panel automatically lights up – handy for viewing the dashboard in a dimly lit room.
Choice of Pilots
A switch on the dashboard lets you choose whether to run your fireplace in either standing pilot mode – where the pilot flame continually stays on (good for extremely cold weather) – of an energy-conserving GreenSmart mode, in which the pilot flame ignites via an intermittent pilot. When your fireplace isn’t being operated, your pilot isn’t on.
The GreenSmart system includes a battery back-up so it’ll ignite properly, even during power outages.
I like this feature. GreenSmart stoves come with two separate burners that can be operated together for maximum heat output and flame appearance, or with only the front burner. You click a rocker switch to turn off the rear burner, giving you a “low burn” (up to 72 percent less than a high burn) that cranks out less heat but has a gentle, flickering flame.
Variable Flame Control
You can adjust the flame and heat from high to low.
Standard in all GreenSmart stoves, fireplaces, and inserts, accent lights add a warm glow to both the logs and ceramic fireback. You can turn on the accent light when your fire is off so your fireplace functions as a nightlight. You can also turn it on when the fireplace is lit, adding to the bright effect created by the flame.
The optional remote is a must-have, in my opinion. It allows you to run the fireplace in “Smart Thermostat Mode,” which means it automatically adjusts the flame height based on the temperature setting. The flame will modulate up or down as opposed to shutting off/on, which conserves fuel and maximizes heating ability.
Of course, you can also use the remote to turn the accent light on or off, to manually adjust the flame height, to turn the fan on and off and adjust its speed, and to turn the split-flow burner on and off. It’s almost as addicting as flipping channels on your TV!
I’ve owned a Clearwater Spa for 14 years and my family (my hubby and our two teenage sons) spend many a relaxing evening relaxing in it.
When I toured Clearwater Spas’ manufacturing plant inWoodinville, Washington last week, I commented that my spa still works beautifully after nearly a decade and a half of hard use.
“You build these things too well,” I told Marketing Director, Chris Warhol. “I need my hot tub to break down so I can upgrade to one of these splashy new models.” (And splashy they are, with floating remote controls, waterfalls, pop-up water fans, digital mood lighting, built-in stereo systems – even TVs!)
But what impressed me most is the company’s commitment to building energy-efficient spas.
“It’s the hallmark of our spas,” Chris told me.
As I toured the factory, I became firmly convinced that Clearwater Spas doesn’t just talk the “green” talk; they walk the talk. They’ve trademarked the term E-Smart Technology™, which stands for energy efficiencies, engineering, and environment.
At their manufacturing facility, the focus is on providing a safe and healthy working environment for their employees. Rather than using fiberglass resin (a toxic, atmosphere-polluting Volatile Organic Compound), Clearwater Spas backs their Lucite shells with an environmentally-friendly eco spray. I stood next to a man who was applying EcoSpray® to a newly-molded spa, and I didn’t have the slightest trouble breathing (and I have mild asthma).
They use 100% recycled ABS to fabricate the Dura Floors on all their spas, and they recycle 100% of their wood, plastic and cardboard waste.
Unlike other spas manufacturers, most of whom use spray insulation, Clearwater Spas uses a Reflective Thermal Barrier (RTB) insulation – a thick layer of hard insulation backed with thermal foil on both sides to reflect heat in and cold outside air away from the spa. RTB insulation is 12% more energy-efficient than foam-filled spas.
“Most spas don’t have a floor system; they just have a plastic bottom stapled on,” Chris told me. “When you set the spa on cold cement there’s a heat sink effect – cold air from the ground pulls heat from the hot tub into the ground.”
Clearwater Spas lifts their spas off the ground, creating air space that allows heat to stay in the water, thus saving on energy costs. They are the only spa manufacturer that uses an insulated durafloor foundation; a thick layer of RTB insulation is built into the floor, further increasing the spa’s energy efficiency.
With Clearwater Spas’ commitment to E-Smart Technology™, it’s no wonder they’re among an elite group of about a dozen spa manufacturers nationally certified by the California Energy Commission (CEC) for meeting its stringent energy-efficiency guidelines.