An Introduction To Modern Freestanding Bathtubs – And Why You Want One!

Upgrading to a luxury bathtub is often more about features than style. Many high end bathtubs are drop-ins, which means they’re only as attractive as the mounts you put them in, so the focus tends to be on the size and capacity of the tub and any add-on features it has rather than the way it looks. But modern freestanding bathtubs are stylish in their own right, with striking sculptural designs that make them an ideal choice for an artistic centerpiece. If you’re looking for a way to make a statement, these sleek, shapely tubs are a great way to do it, and offer a few distinct advantages over more common soaking tubs and whirlpools.

Stylish Simplicity

Palazzo 66" Soaking Bathtub PBT-PALAZZO-6631-CR by Pacific Collection
Palazzo 66″ Soaking Bathtub PBT-PALAZZO-6631-CR by Pacific Collection

Where most standard tubs are rectangular or have no profile at all, modern freestanding bathtubs like those from the Pacific Collection are an experiment in silhouettes, with dramatic and unusual outlines that draw the eye and make them stand out. Made of smooth, unblemished white acrylic, these tubs are clean and simple, but with bold and elegant lines that give them an artistic, sculptural look and feel. Most designs are curvy, with sloped sides that echo (and improve on) the classic shapes of freestanding clawfoot and slipper tubs. But they can also be uniquely angular, with unusual geometric designs that have a very modern feel and are meant to stand out sharply and eye-catchingly against the backdrop of your bathroom.

Pacific Collection Freestanding Bath Tubs:

Size And Capacity

Venetian 67" Soaking Bathtub PBT-VENETIAN-6729-CR by Pacific Collection
Venetian 67″ Soaking Bathtub PBT-VENETIAN-6729-CR by Pacific Collection

The biggest difference between a standard bathtub and what would be considered a “luxury” tub is size – length, width, and depth, as well as how many gallons of water it can hold. A bigger tub with a higher capacity lets you stretch out and more fully submerge yourself, and on a surface level, bigger is obviously better. But high-end drop in tubs aren’t always efficiently designed – they have plenty of room to move around in, but take a whole lot of water (and time) to fill. Sculptural freestanding tubs use their internal shape to their best benefit, reducing the amount of water it takes to fill them while retaining ample leg room and keeping the water levels artificially high – so it feels like you’re soaking in a big, deep tub with only a fraction of the water use.

No Mount Needed

Riviera 67" Soaking Bathtub PBT-RIVIERA-6728-CR by Pacific Collection
Riviera 67″ Soaking Bathtub PBT-RIVIERA-6728-CR by Pacific Collection

Bathtub mounts can be big, grand, and beautiful – as varied and intricate as your imagination (and budget) allows. But they also represent an additional (and rather involved and expensive) step in the installation process. You’ll need a mount that’s hefty enough to support a big, heavy bathtub full of water, and pay for the additional materials and construction cost of having it built in the first place. Freestanding bathtubs, on the other hand, ship ready to install and require minimal effort and expense to set up and get working. And shapely, sculptural tubs more than make up for the lack of external ornamentation with the design of the tub itself, so you can get a luxurious look without the extra expense and hassle.

Saving Space

Cosmo 66" Soaking Bathtub PBT-COSMO-6633-CR by Pacific Collection
Cosmo 66″ Soaking Bathtub PBT-COSMO-6633-CR by Pacific Collection

Another advantage of not needing a tub mount is simply that freestanding bathtubs take up a whole lot less space than drop in tubs. At the very least, drop in tubs need a mount that’s a few inches wider than them in all dimensions, if not much wider even than that, and while all that staging can certainly be very pretty, it also takes up a big chunk of your bathroom. Conversely, the walls of freestanding bathtubs are relatively thin and shapely, hugging the contours of the interior of the tub, so they take up much less space – both physically and visually. Since they aren’t all straight edges and 90 degree angles, that also means they can fit comfortably into tighter spaces than a standard bathtub. Even if you place them smack dab in the middle of your bathroom, they won’t dominate or overwhelm the space.

Bells and Whistles

Luxor 66" Soaking Bathtub PBT-LUXOR-6631-CR by Pacific Collection
Luxor 66″ Soaking Bathtub PBT-LUXOR-6631-CR by Pacific Collection

The one main drawback of freestanding bathtubs being so lean and mean is that they often don’t have room for the hardware that goes into many high end drop in tubs. It’s rare (though not unheardof) for a freestanding bathtub to have whirlpool jets, in-line heating, built-in lighting, or an internal sound system simply because the thin walls and lean profile mean there’s nowhere to hide the necessary pumps and pipes and wiring that these features require. The more compact and unusual the shape of the tub, the less likely it is to have these features, but once again this also means the tubs are typically less expensive than more mechanically involved drop in tubs.

What About Price?

Bellagio 58" Soaking Bathtub PBT-BELLAGIO-5828-CR by Pacific Collection
Bellagio 58″ Soaking Bathtub PBT-BELLAGIO-5828-CR by Pacific Collection

The price of any type of bathtub can vary widely between one style or manufacturer and another, but as a general rule of thumb, freestanding bathtubs are ever so slightly more expensive than drop in tubs of equivalent size and quality. But keep in mind that that’s mostly because freestanding bathtubs are “complete” and ready to install on delivery, while drop in tubs only have an internal basin and a lip around the edge, so they can’t be used on their own. That’s also not counting the added expense of air or water jets and other luxury features, which steeply increase the cost both of the tubs themselves and their installation and maintenance. So when comparing a freestanding bathtub to a more conventional luxury tub, make sure to factor in the hidden costs before you decide to buy!

Freestanding Bath Tubs: