Enghien-les-Bains - France
A short fifteen-minute train ride north from Paris brings you to the picturesque town of Enghien-Les-Bains, a fashionable resort set around a large lake, complete with fountains and water jets that are illuminated with coloured light by night. A large Casino (the first in France), and thermal complex front onto the lake, where throughout the summer visitors enjoy the water fishing and paddle-boating. The charm of its waterside setting and it’s grand 19th century villas are complemented by a thoroughly modern offering in the Centre des Arts at Enghien-les-Bains, a multidisciplinary arts space dedicated to performing and experimenting with the digital arts. Every other year, Enghien-les-Bains is home to “les Bains Numériques” a festival of the digital and contemporary arts, and there’s the Barrière Enghien Jazz Festival too, along with a cultural season at the Centre des Arts, fusing dance and new technology.
In 1766 Louis Cotte, a priest from Montmorency discovered a “smelly stream” fed by a spring which overflowed from a pond, which is now the Lake of Enghien-les-Bains. In 1772 Louis Guillaume Le Veillard, a Paris pharmacist was granted concessions by the Prince of Condé to establish thermal baths, and by 1821, when the first proper thermal facilities were created by Doctor Péligot the town was thriving, with its water being sold in nearby Paris. The sulphur-rich springs are the basis for the ultra-modern facilities which can be found in Enghien-les-Bains today, specialising particularly in respiratory conditions. There are the Thermal Baths offering a full range of 21st century treatments, and the “Spa Diane Barrière”, a luxurious leisure spa with far-reaching views of the lake and the city of Paris. These combine with the “Soins et Médecine Esthétique Diane Barrière” which brings together medical and cosmetic therapies. Enghien-les-Bains, the only spa in the Ile de France region, is a centre of excellence, with some 160 doctors and 250 other experts.