Bathing for personal hygiene reasons as was the case at one time in the extolled ‘Tröpferlbad’ (public shower baths), for sports strengthening or for well-being? The role of spas and thermal baths has changed. From a necessary evil to a little luxury from time to time ...
They used to say ‘Take me to the spa at Oberlaa’; now you can go to the Therme Wien which is in more or less the same location. Modernised, extended and situated in the middle of the beautiful Kurpark - ‘Oberlaa’ with its wonderful spa cafe and cake shop is and remains for the Viennese the no. 1 spa - it lies directly on the U-Bahn (underground) U1 and boasts a health park, sauna and fitness.
It is historic and remains popular - the Amalienbad was pioneering in Europe in terms of the construction of baths and originally had a moveable glass roof (!) What’s more: in Vienna, women were only permitted to swim from 1831. All the nicer, then, that the Amalienbad was named after Amalie Pölzer (1871-1919), the first woman in the municipal council in Vienna’s 10th district, where the baths are located. In addition to this, the baths were awarded the German Lighting Design Award in 2014 for the interior.
It was once a popular open-air sulphurous mineral pool, built by the architects of the Vienna State Opera. Previously, the Romans had splashed around in this location. After 150 years, renovation work started in 1999, it was covered with a freely suspended glass roof and renamed ‘Römertherme’. Today, there is a sauna complex, whirlpool, fitness and cardio area as well as alternative medicine within the attached health spa.
Depending on where you live in Vienna, sometimes it is quicker to get to the Therme Laa by car than to get to a municipal baths or the Therme Wien. Another advantage is that you are certain not to be stuck in a traffic jam on the way there, heading into the wine district. The thermal baths are just as easily reached by train, taking a relaxing hour and a half. The neighbouring Czechs are also fans of these thermal baths with a ‘Silent Spa’ which offers a retreat where you can get away from it all, and truly a great deal of peace and quiet.