Enghien-les-Bains (France)

lia
January 16, 2018

A short train ride north from Paris brings you to the picturesque town of Enghien-Les- Bains, a fashionable spa resort set around a lake whose mineral waters, discovered 200 years ago, are still used regularly in a full range of modern top-level treatments.

The landscape of Enghien-les-Bains is shaped by the presence of the big lake, with fountains and jets that are colourfully iluminated by night. A popular spot where throughout the summer visitors enjoy water fishing and paddle-boating, the lake is surrounded by a romantic promenade that passes trough the thermal complex and ends at the magnificent Casino, the first in France.

The charm of this waterside setting and the grand 19th century villas is complemented by the vanguardist Centre-des- Arts, a multidisciplinary space dedicated to performing and experimenting with digital arts. Media arts are, in fact, a central element for Enghien-les-Bains, designated UNESCO Creative City of Media Arts in 2013. The cultural season of the Centre-des-Arts, fusing dance and new technology, and the presitigious biannual festival Les Bains Numériques are, together with the sulphur-rich mineral springs of Enghien, its major attractions.

logo enghien

Enghien-les-Bains Tourist Office

 

Enghien-les-Bains history as a spa town began at the end of the 18th century. In 1766 a French priest named Louis Cotte discovered a “smelly stream” fed by a spring which overflowed from the Montmorency pond, which is now the Lake of Enghien-les-Bains. In 1772 Louis Guillaume Le Veillard, a Parisian pharmacist was granted concessions by the Prince of Condé to establish thermal baths, which will be renewed again in 1799.

By 1821 the town was thriving, with its water being sold. That year, Doctor Péligot acquired the use of the Lake and, after having making some drillings, found a second spring, thus finishing the first proper thermal facilities of Enghien. From then, the building has three wings, perpendicular to the front and which correspond to the three pavilions.

French King Louis XVIII recovered from a leg ulcer thanks to the water of the Cotte springs, today known as the King's spring. Word of his cure rapidly spread through Parisian salons, turning Enghien-les-Bains is a trendy retreat for this refined socitey.

Enghien-les-Bains’s romantic lake captivated the imagination of great writers such as Alexandre Dumas, George Sand or Jean-Jacques Rousseau, who even has its own museum today in the neighbouring town of Montmorency.

At the beginning of the 20th century, the thermal site comprised around 10 springs, 8 already recognised for public use in 1865, and in 2013 3 new capture points for the sulphureted waters were constructed. The springs, originally superficial, have no direct link to the current lake, and are naturally isolated from it. The natural geological protection and biological self-purification capacities of these waters have contributed to ensure the survival of springs in an urbanized environment.

Enghien-les-Bains' waters are the most sulphureted waters in France, with a chemical composition that includes carbon dioxide (80 mg/l), bicarbonates and carbonates (400 mg/l), calcium (160- 180 mg/l), magnesium, sodium, sulfates (200 mg/l), sulphurated hydrogen (36 mg/l), and few quantities of barium and boron.

Enghien-les-Bains, the only spa in the Ile de France region, is a centre of excellence. 160 doctors and 250 other experts operate ultra-modern facilities where a full range of treatments are offerred, all based upon these remarkable sulphureted calcic waters

The Thermal Baths offer medical and healthcare services based on the decongesting, anti-allergic and bacteriostatic properties of the springs, having specialized in respiratory conditions. Its 21-days thermal treatment program (including 18 days of treatment) has been approved by the Social Security in its recommendations for the treatment of Respiratory / ENT diseases.

Open treatment or mini treatment programs are also offered, lasting from 6 to 10 days, and are indicated for stop-smoking therapies, voice problems, oral infections of the mucous membrane, etc. These mini treatment programs are used as a preventive measure or as a complement to an individual existing therapy, as well as traditional treatment within the State health service. They are not reimbursed by the Social Security.

A world of wellness is also available at the “Spa Diane Barrière”, a luxurious leisure spa with far-reaching views of the lake and the city of Paris. In combination with the “Soins et Médecine Esthétique Diane Barrière”, it offers well-being and beauty therapies like massages and modellings, relaxing, slimming coaching, anti-ageing coaching and anti-stress treatments. It is equipped with a steam room, saunas, fitness area and a cardio-training room.

Springs:

Coquil

Earliest known use:

1820

Hottest Spring:

15ºC

Chemical Elements:

Sulphur and calcium

Enghien-les-Bains boast a modern lively cultural scene where Media Arts play a major role. Every other year it is home to “Les Bains Numériques” a prestigious international festival of the digital and contemporary arts and activities at the Centre-des-Arts always offer fine examples of how traditional and digital can dialogue. At the beginning of the summer, the town holds the Barrière Enghien Jazz Festival, with crowded outdoor concerts by the lake and through the year the Casino offers a busy entertainment programme.

Enghien-les-Bains is also a top destination for MICE tourism. A France Congrès member, the town has 3 conferences centers with capacity for up to 700-500 people, and a long expertise in cocktails and reception. In combination with spa services, the Casino, a golf course, the Hippodrome Enghien - Soisy and its privileged situation, it makes Enghien-les-Bains the perfect place for the organization of semminars and congresses.

The sunset over the lake in Enghien-les-Bains

Enghien-les-Bains is home to France's first casino, set in a gorgeous location, in front of the lake.

The Spa is the wellness centre of the Barrière group, dedicated to beauty, energy and serenity. Spread over two floors, in the heart of a multi-activity centre, the Spa was designed to soothe you.

Enghien's thermal baths are a reputed centre for the treatment of respiratory conditions

The kiosk in front of the thermal facilities treasures the King's mineral spring.

Spring view from Enghien's promenade, surrounding the lake.

When visiting Enghien-les-Bains don't miss the opportunity to enjoy a walk around the lake!

Enghien-les-Bains is home to several music festivals from June to September, among them the prestigious Barrière Enghien Jazz Festival