Jugendstilbad – pamper yourself
Since 2008 the gorgeous Art Nouveau public bath opened its doors after substantial renovation. The bath was built during the town’s Art Nouveau heydays in 1909 but fell into disrepair after having been heavily bombed in WW II. I remember that I saw it when I arrived in Darmstadt in 1989 and felt so sorry for this once so grand building.
Shortly after it reopened I felt the desperate need of some pampering and went inside with friends during a weekend day. We spent almost the whole day inside, had fun, did people watching and tried almost every of its facilities, such as sauna, steam bath, massages. And of course we swam in this marvellous pool which was restored according to the original ambience.
The facilities are indeed nice. They have all sorts of baths, SPAs and saunas, with different temperatures (40°, 65°, 90°), room sizes and aromas (herbs and rose). My personal peeve during the day we were there was that some people were just too loud, which is somehow not a good idea for meditative baths. And some peeping Tom guys have also been there, but then I think that is almost unavoidable in any kind of spa with saunas. I also found that the amount of resting couches wasn’t enough for the people that day. On the other hand it was during a weekend; it might be better during the week. The pool on the ground floor is magnificent. This is the one on the main photo on the bath’s website below. It was restored according to the original plans, in Art Nouveau style. In the spa part they have three brine basins, one of them illuminated underwater.
A restaurant is located on the first floor. Several dishes, cold and warm are offered. When we were there in 2009 we had a very delicious milk-yoghurt drink with cherry for quite a reasonable price. But it seems that the caterer has changed in the meantime. Prices are considerably higher, according to the weekly menu on the website. I hope that they got their ventilation under control in the meantime because when we were there the kitchen aromas drifted around in the bathing sections. This might be nice with some meals but drifting of curry sausage smell was definitely not appealing.
You should bring at least bathing suit and flip-flops. As of now, bathing gowns and towels can be rented for a small fee. Also water wings for kids and protecting glasses for solarium can be rented. Be aware that they don’t have separate changing rooms for men and women (something I felt a bit uncomfortable with, but well…). When you have paid your entrance, you will get a wristband with a chip. This enables you to lock your locker, however during busy times you might have to wait for free lockers. The wristband chip allows you entering the different parts of the bath. However be aware that you will charged later when you enter a part you didn’t pay for (I find this irritating because I would assume that the system at least warns one when one enters a part not paid for at the beginning). The chip works for the restaurant too.
Daily from 10:00 to 22:00; closed on Christmas (Dec. 24 and 25); closes at 16:00 already at New Year’s Eve and opens at 14:00 on New Year’s Day.
Different entrance fees depending on the facilities one wants to use: bath only, spa or sauna. Spa includes bath, sauna includes spa and bath. In addition prices differ depending how long one wants to stay inside (2 hours, 4 hours or the whole day):
Bath only: 5,80 €, 7,90 € and 10 €
Spa: 8,90 €, 11,60 € and 13,70 €
Sauna: 13,10 €, 15,80 € and 18,90 €
Discounts are available, but only for handicapped (with entry B on the ID card) and kids under 16 years. Kids smaller than 1 metre don’t have to pay though.
No discounts for seniors or students!
Families however get discounts but the kids must (!!) belong to the same family; they control ID cards at the entrance.
A map with the locations of the several facilities is available, albeit in German only:
floor plans of Jugendstilbad.
Would I go there again? Maybe because it is the only swimming and sauna facility nearby. But maybe I would simply drive to Mannheim and go swimming and have a sauna in Herschelbad. The day ticket at Herschelbad is 3,50 € for swimming and 12,80 € for sauna.
From Luisenplatz (city centre), walk eastward, direction castle/residence and further on into Landgraf-Georg Straße. Turn right at the first large parking lot, which is Mercksplatz. For drivers: opposite of this parking lot is another one, free of charge.
Location of Jugendstilbad on Google Maps.
© Ingrid D., February 2008; update September 2013: wording only.
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Travelling Aikidokas are warmly welcome
If you are Aikidoka, visiting Darmstadt or vicinity and you feel the need of practising: you are warmly welcome to join our training sessions at Aikikai Darmstadt.
Tuesday 19:00 - 21:00 (beginners and advanced students);
Wednesday 19:00 - 21:00 (beginners);
Thursday 19:00 -21:00 (beginners and advanced students);
Saturday 16:00 - 18:00 (beginners and advanced students).
Equipment: There is no gear necessary. Just wear comfortable sports dress. If you feel the need of practising with “Gi” and don’t have your own with you, send me VT-mail and I will lend one (M, medium size).
Location of Aikikai Darmstadt on Google Maps.
© Ingrid D., tip date: September 2004 (update March 2011: location on Google Maps added).
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