TRIVIA: Who was the first president to use a hot tub in the Oval Office?

TRIVIA: Who was the first president to use a hot tub in the Oval Office?

Hot Tub Trivia: The “First” Hot Tub


If you guessed Bill Clinton, you’re right on the money. (And really, who’s surprised?) Watkins Manufacturing donated a seven-person “Grandee” model to the first family in 1997.

“The President reports that it’s nice,” said Michael D. McCurry, the White House press secretary, to the New York Times in 1997.

The Times also spoke with Steve Hammock, president of Watkins, about the donation.

“Every once in while, there may be a photo taken of that product, and it may be a good thing for our business,” Hammock said. But he had to laugh a little at the suggestion that such images might not portray the President in the best light.

“We are definitely a mainstream, family-oriented company,” Hammock said, later referring to the hot tub as “a very wholesome, legitimate therapy appliance.”

The hot tub was donated just before Clinton suffered a knee injury from a fall on the White House steps. His doctors recommended he use the hot tub for therapy purposes.

But why would the Clinton family need a seven-seat hot tub?

“We don’t rule out the prospect that sometime in the near future there will be larger families that occupy the White House,” McCurry said. “How many children does Al Gore have again?”

However, this wasn’t the first hot tub intended for the White House. Hammock said the company made a gift or sold a tub to the Reagan administration as well. “I don’t know where that one ended up,” he said.