When Swiss spa dealer Laurent Frenzel decided to hire a full-time designer to create beautiful environments around the hot tubs he sells, some associates in America initially chuckled.

“They were laughing about it, saying, ‘You’re crazy. What are you doing? Is that for a spa?’” says the general manager of Leader Spa in Morges, Switzerland. “Somebody said it’s beautiful but it was not necessary to do because [the design is] the problem of the customer. But if the customer is not convinced in the project, they will not buy the spa.”

Now, it doesn’t seem so funny. Through the work of designer Stanislas Petey, the company has been able to create environments that convince some customers to purchase a spa when they otherwise wouldn’t. The firm’s work garnered awards and has been featured in a number of publications.

Leader Spa isn’t the only dealer outside the United States that’s taking hot tubs to new heights. In this virtual slideshow, we feature four designs that show that the only limitation for showcasing portable spas is imagination.