Art nouveau Sprudelhof (fountain courtyard) in Bad Nauheim

The spa town's distinctive landmark

It is the largest coherent art nouveau complex in Europe and the reference to water as a health-giving force is omnipresent here. The former spa complex is a total work of art and impressively shows the combination of architecture, fine and applied arts, as well as garden landscaping and design of the square.

Visitors are fascinated the moment they enter the fountain courtyard. From the upper steps of the large ?ight of stairs, there is a beautiful view of Bad Nauheim’s landmark between two gatehouses. Bright, white walls with carved limestone ornaments invite you to stroll through the bathing complex built at the turn of the twentieth century. Large clock towers rise above you. In the centre is a monumental basin with bubbling fountains enclosed by cleanly designed arcades.

In the fountain courtyard, visitors immediately get a sense of Bad Nauheim’s history as a world-renowned health resort. The spa complex, which was built between 1905 and 1911 in the art nouveau style, included six bathhouses with waiting rooms and a total of 265 bathing cubicles, as well as two administration buildings that form a court-like complex opening up towards the park, and still showcase two characteristic fountains in the centre today. What makes Bad Nauheim's art nouveau so special is that everything is still in its original state - the waiting rooms, inner courtyards and wooden tubs in bathhouse 3 transport visitors back in time to 1900.

The interiors of the buildings reflect the special Bad Nauheim art nouveau style once again. Here as well, references to water as a health-giving force are always present. Little by little, the bathhouses and ornamental courtyards reveal one gem after another: ceramic masks, honey-coloured terracotta fountains, sparkling carbon dioxide bubbles, mermaids, decorative waves and sea horses.

Signi?cant representatives of the artists' colony from Mathildenhöhe in Darmstadt, who were dedicated to art nouveau, were commissioned with the construction of a completely new spa complex in Bad Nauheim at the beginning of the 20th century. The architect Wilhelm Jost designed the Sprudelhof (fountain courtyard). Many renowned artists such as Jakob Julius Scharvogel, Friedrich Wilhelm Kleukens, Albin Müller and Heinrich Jobst contributed to the artistic decoration. They created a work of art that now represents Europe’s largest coherent art nouveau ensemble.

Art nouveau tour: Spa treasures of international fame

During a guided art nouveau tour, you find out more about the largest coherent art nouveau complex in Europe, and gain an insight into one of the historic bathhouses as well as the Trinkkuranlage (mineral water cure facility) and the Sprudelhof (fountain courtyard).