There are those who say that the only green way to bathe is in a rare two minute navy shower like Sami does. However in Japan people take baths, by getting really clean in a shower first, sharing the water among the whole family and then using the gray water. Baths are more than just for cleaning, as well; Designer Kenya Hara explains:
In Japan, the bathtub is more than just a part of the bathroom where you cleanse your body. Soaking in a warm bath relaxes the body and the soul. That is what makes the bathtub so important. It is a place where you can relax your mind. Sinking slowly into the bath feels so good as the warmth steadily permeates through you. It is almost as if the cells of your body are being reinvigorated one by one.
Now LIXIL introduces an update that looks like it might save water and perhaps energy.
Foam is generated by mixing air with a " special foaming agent made of substance safe enough to be used in food or cosmetic products through the foam generating unit." There appears to be less water in the tub than usual, and the foam acts as an insulating layer, a "lid in keeping the hot water from cooling off".
Imagine time passing pleasantly - you are enveloped in warm foam; you’re reading a book, watching a movie, feeling the air and the light on your skin. You're bathing in creamy foam. More than a new style of bathing, this is something that will liberate a new horizon of human desire. Witness a small slice of the future of bliss and relaxation that we human beings can savor, from a perspective in which the human body, our living spaces and technology are treated as one.
I should note that I installed a bathtub with a bubble system instead of a whirlpool years ago, and found that the pumping of air through the water cooled it down so much that the bath was ruined; I have not turned it on in a decade. Also, the addition of the "special foaming agent" will make the water unusable as grey water.
But I do like the idea of the tub in the library or living room, sharing the space instead of being hidden away in a closet. Toss in a NUMI and we can get rid of a whole room.