Students can now enjoy a little bubbly courtesy of the Rec Cen, which opened a new spa this Monday.

The new 16-by-10-foot spa can seat up to 17 individuals, and cost $250,000 to build, Project Manager Karl Burrelsan said. Students paid for the spa through the $60 per quarter that they give to the Rec Cen.

The spa – located by the wave wall of the pool area, near the locker room entrances – is one of the latest additions in the Recreation Center Expansion project. As part of the project, last year Rec Cen II opened along with a hockey rink, room for more cardio equipment and, eventually, a climbing wall.

Local company Leon Construction began building the spa on Nov. 1, Burrelsan said.

Scott Brooks, a project manager at Leon construction who oversaw the building of the spa, said it was originally scheduled to open in February, but seasonal rain increased the cost of building the spa and pushed back the finishing date.

“There were some delays due to the inclement weather,” Brooks said. “It should only have taken about four months, but because of all the rain, our ditches kept getting washed out.”

Brooks said the cost of the spa had little to do with its size, but rather had to do with the equipment needed in building a spa to safety specifications. He said a significant amount of electrical re-routing had to be done in order to dig the foundations.

“All that stuff can get pretty expensive,” Brooks said.

Sara Novy, a fourth-year Spanish major and lifeguard at the Rec Cen, said the spa takes about two minutes for lifeguards to prepare in the morning for use throughout the day. She said lifeguards have been instructed to occasionally scan the spa area to ensure the safety of users.

James Beall, a third-year math major, questioned the effectiveness of the spa during the hot spring quarter weather.

“It’d be cool if they had opened it in the winter; it’s pretty damn hot [now],” Beall said.

Third-year sociology major Rachel Pancake, however, said the spa can be useful, regardless of the season.

“It must be pretty nice to have it at night,” she said.

The spa is open during normal pool hours, which are 6:30 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. on Saturday, and 9:00 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. on Sundays.