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Bestway SaluSpa Helsinki


The Helsinki Hot Tub is a real show stopper with its distinctive pine print livery. It’s an inflatable hot tub that looks, well,  just like a traditional Scandinavian tub !! . 

Visually the Helsinki just oozes class and quality, but we’re going to find out what’s underneath it’s striking exterior. 

An inflatable hot tub should be more than good looks. 

We’re looking for a great hot tub experience too. 

The Saluspa Helsinki has been built with many of the new Bestway innovations on board. One of the important ones is the liner, it’s been tailored using a Drop Stitch fabric rather than more traditional 3 – ply  TriTech that we’re used to.

The new fabric means there’s a lot of new design possibilities, and for the new owner the possibility of outdoor winter hot tubbing.

So on paper this tub isn’t just a pretty face.

It’s got new technology on-board, a modern pump and heater design, and a fresh approach to the internal architecture of the inflatable liner. 

In this Helsinki Hot Tub review we’re going to take an in depth walk through all the features on offer. We’re going to find out if the Helsinki really all stacks up into an inflatable tub worth buying.

Let’s dive straight into the Helsinki Spa set up………

At A Glance  

Product:     Helsinki Hot Tub 
Brand: Bestway
Type:   Inflatable
Seats:   5 – 7 persons
Jet Count: 180
Capacity: 297 gallons
Dimensions: H 26in x D 71in.
Internal Dimension: 67 inches.
Filled Weight: 2475 lbs
  • 180 Air Jets
  • Drop Stitch™ puncture resistant carcass
  • Freeze Shield™ ice protection
  • ChemConnect™ water maintenance system
  • Digital Control Panel
  • Plan Ahead Timer
  • Well Insulated Top Cover
  • Insulated Floor


Lay-Z-Spa® Helsinki AirJet™ (2021)

SaluSpa Helsinki Hot Tub

Fully Reviewed

The Helsinki Hot Tub is what we would call a “no frills” tub. It’s not weighed down with extra baggage like water softeners, remote wi-fi connectivity or a salt water option. 

But do you really need any of these fancy things to get a great hot tub experience?  After all really a hot tub is all about jets, bubbles and hot water at the end of the day.

The Helsinki tub certainly has all those things and more. But do they work well, and are they well matched to the tub size?

Let’s start by taking a look at what equipment and features the Helsinki Hot Tub has does have.

We’ll get past the Helsinki’s pretty face and into the guts of the thing !!!

Helsinki Spa by Pool

SaluSpa Helsinki Hot Tub Feature Guide 

Air Jet Count

Because the thinner walls of the Helsinki tub give a generous 67 inch internal diameter 180 air jets can be easily be spaced around the internal circumference of the tub.

That’s over 10 jets per foot.

More jets than any other inflatable hot tub currently on the market so bathers can be sure of a really pleasant, invigorating experience.


The Helsinki Spa pump has an output of 320 gallons/hour so it’s able to finish a complete circulation of the tub water volume in a little under an hour.  

Chemical treatment and maintenance using the ChemConnect system will probably need at least two circulations so that’s a couple of hours of pump run time.

Bestway’s range of hot tubs all use pretty much the same well proven pump and heater setup

This is a super quiet pump / heater combo which is important considering it’s just a couple of feet away from the bathers.

Helsinki Control Panel

Set on top of the pump / heater stack puts the flip-up control panel within easy reach of the bather. Nice large size, easy to see, and easy to understand icons make control panel a breeze to run. Nothing complicated here.

No degree in computer science required to run this hot tub. Simple and intuitive, we like that.

Coleman Hot Tub Control Panel
  • Locking System
  • Water heater.
  • Select heater start time
  • Set heater duration
  • Water filter start.
  • Temperature selector.
  • Start Air Jet massage.
  • Temp Fahrenheit / Celsius.  

The Helsinki will keep within a 2 degree window of the programmed water temperature for up to 48 hours


The Helsinki hot tub does contain a large volume of water, nearly 300 gallons in fact. That’s great for the bathers but it does need heating, and of course that takes time and energy.

Depending on the ambient temperature new owners can expect to wait at least 24 hours before the tub reaches 104ºF. Because the Helsinki comes with an excellent cover which has an inflatable bladder incorporated in it heat loss is reduced during initial tub warm up.

We always recommend using a thermal blanket too. This lays directly on top of the water. It will dramatically reduce heat loss and evaporation. It cost just a few bucks, and deployed after using the hot tub will save a lot on monthly energy bills. 

Here’s an article explaining a thermal blankets to minimise heat lose and speed up initial spa temperature build.


The new software that comes with this tub has a timer that allows owners to choose the heating duration anywhere between 0 and 999 hours.

When the heater is activated does require a little thought. It works a little like the timer on your mobil phone.  

There is no day, date or time involved, the owner simply has to tap how many hours ahead the tub should start and again there’s an envelope of between 0 and 999 hours to select. 

Who plans 999 hours ahead ??  If you do then you’ll love this feature !!

Inflatable Hot Tub Filter Case


The well proven and inexpensive Bestway cartridge system of filtration is used with the Helsinki. A cartridge is provided with the initial spa purchase to get the tub up and running. Replacement cartridges are cheap and easy to find. They’ll run at around  $2 – $3.00 each depending on quantity bought. 

Chemical Treatment

Bathers safety is taken care of by the new Chemconnect system of chemical maintenance. The chemicals are dispersed via a dispenser hard plumbed into the system. It’s just a matter of adjusting the chemical release and the Helsinki  ChemConnect does the rest. 

SaluSpa - ChemConnect

A far more efficient way of adding chemicals to a tub than the floating dispenser but it does take a little trial and error to get adjusted to get it just right. 

What Is Freeze Shield

You can keep using the Helsinki Spa on during the winter months even when the ambient temperature is lower than 43°F. 

The Freeze Shield system sensors will automatically kick in and start the heater to keep the water temperature between 43° and 50°F to prevent the plumbing freezing. 

If the Freeze Shield system fails or isn’t working, alarms will show on the spa control panel.

Now the Bestway manual states don’t use the tub below 14ºF. This is an astonishingly low number.  We must question whether the heater has the power capable of overcoming this intense cold. We haven’t been able to verify this ourselves.

If you are planning to run the tub in such extreme conditions we strongly advise adding additional thermal insulation around, over, and under the tub. 

We have written this article showing ways to effectively insulate an inflatable hot tub in winter.

Helsinki Hot Tub Construction 

The Helsinki Hot Tub liner is made from a the Bestway DropStitch fabric, that’s why the tub walls are just 2 inches wide. It’s also why the tub can be used in winter.

Bestway Drop Stitch Material

The manual warns not use the spa when the ambient temperature reaches 14°F which absolutely floors our experts who are used to the conventional TriTech fabric that was just rated down to 42ºF.

I – Beam internal architecture is still used to add strength to the walls and stop buckling.

Of course as mentioned above the question is can the heater maintain the water temperature at very low ambient temperatures? 

What’s In The Box 

Everything you need to get you up and running apart from the water. That’s what’s in the box !!

There are a couple of optional extras we recommend purchasing that aren’t included though. 

An insulated ground cloth, or a set of insulted tiles to lay underneath the tub, and a insulating solar cover to lay directly on top of the water.  These items are especially important if you plan to run the Helsinki hot tub outside in the cooler months. These extras will add a little to the end price, but will save a lot on energy bills.

Included In The Box

  • Hot tub liner
  • Top cover
  • Insulating bladder
  • Pump heater combo
  • Starter filter
  • Pressure gauge
  • ChemConnect system
  • Manual
  • All required tools

By inflatable hot tub standards the Helsinki isn’t very heavy.  It weighs in at a tad over 67 lbs which is some 20 lbs lighter than other tubs that use 3 – Ply TriTech Fabrics. 

The box is still pretty heavy for one person to handle manually, so organise help or a set of wheels to move it to storage or it’s set up location.  

No help or no wheels? Then just unpack it where it sits. Be careful with the liner it’s the heaviest and most awkward to carry. 

Inflating The Helsinki Hot Tub  

Once all the tub components are where you want to set up the tub then the process of making the hot tub ready for water should just take 30 – 40 minutes or so. 

It’s incredibly easy to get things up and running.  The pump tower is simply connected to the liner, press a button and you’ll see the Helsinki spring into life before your eyes.

With more conventional hot tubs that’s about all you need to do. With the tubs in the Saluspa range made from DropStitch fabric a further simple step is required to complete the inflation.

Because of the thinner wall profile they require 7 -10 psi of pressure to fully inflated them. This is above the output of the electric pump so a hand pump is provided in the kit to top up the pressure.  It only takes a few strokes of the hand pump to finish the job. 

Helsinki Hot Tub Cover

Helsinki Hot Tub Key Points

Let’s revise the main tub features covered in this review.

  • Jet Count: 180 Air Jets. This is a large tub but that’s a lot of jets !!
  • Quiet Pump: Low audible impact caused by the pump. An important plus for the the Helsinki Tub.
  • Timer: Not super user friendly but it’s there. Many tubs don’t have this feature. nice feature,
  • Footprint: A small footprint thanks to the thin side walls. The tub still has easy capacity for 5 – 7 people.
  • Weight: If you have a weight restriction this is a reasonably heavy tub at 2500 lbs filled.
  • Insulated Cover: A nice addition here. The integrated bladder in the cover will help to reduce heat loss. We recommend buying extra base and top insulation. It’s an investment that just keeps giving!!
  • Freeze Shield: Allows the tub to be run at low temperatures.
  • Drop Stitch Fabric: Again allows tub to function in lower temperatures as well as creating a thinner side wall.
Helsinki Hot Tub by Pool

Helsinki Hot Tub Review Notes  

One of the most visually appealing of the Saluspa Hot Tub range, the Helsinki Spa is just one of a handful of inflatable tubs that can actually hold six adults in comfort.

It’s not just the authentic wood print fabric that makes it stand out from the rest, it also has plenty of the new Bestway features and technology to make this a very appealing inflatable hot tub choice indeed.

It’s the kind of standout tub that can either be a centre piece in your garden or patio. Alternatively  it can blend nicely into the background of your exterior decor scheme. 

That’s not where it wants to live though. It should be front and centre in all its glory strutting its stuff. 

There’s plenty of jets onboard the Helsinki tub, an abundance in fact, and a heater / blower combo matched to ensure an excellent bather experience.

Having a 67 inch internal diameter makes this an ideal tub for taller folks. If you play for the Chicago Bulls or Miami Heat it might be a tad cramped but for normal 6 foot plus mortals then it’s a great choice.

Claims of sub-zero operation should be taken cautiously in your editors opinion but continuing to use the the tub in the winter months is certainly possible. The DropStitch fabric used on the Helsinki has a much higher threshold against frost damage than the traditional TriTech found on other inflatable hot tubs.

This tub is certainly a fine addition to the Saluspa range, and for anyone looking for a voluminous, fully immersed inflatable tub experience it’s hard to see past the excellent Helsinki Hot Tub.

Another winner from Bestway? We certainly think so.


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