The heart of the place, Health Spa Resort Thermia Palace, was built in 1910-12, and when one of Thermia Palace’s founders, Ľudovít Winter (1870-1968), was looking for a trademark for his company, he wanted a symbol of recovery. A local printer designed for him a figure of a man breaking a crutch. This was the perfect image, for Piešťany's healing water and black mud are said to cure a wide range of medical problems, from nervous disorders and chronic rheumatic and arthritic diseases to tendon and ligament ailments and post-accident lesions of joints and bones.

The town of Piešťany is best reached by car from the border at Komárom/Komárno, from where it is a 90-minute drive north via Nitra. Piešťany proves to be a nice compact place of some 30,000 souls, making it easy to locate our final destination, the five-star Art Nouveau gem Thermia Palace. This sits in an idyll of blissful parkland, with plenty of trees around and a score of swans gracing the water.


An image of a peacock therefore provides the motif for Health Spa Resort Thermia Palace, and this can be seen all around, most notably over the front door, in the reception and as the centrepiece of one of the splendid stained-glass windows. Two peacocks also adorn the cover of the first guestbook, from the year of the opening, 1912, which is kept under glass cover in the hotel’s magnificent Grand Restaurant. Five or six of the colourful birds – real live ones – can be seen in an aviary in the park.

As mentioned, Piešťany is the largest and most popular spa destination in Slovakia, and the hotel section of Thermia Palace is directly connected to the adjoining Irma Health Spa. The whole complex includes four spa houses, the other three being the Napoleon, the Balnea and the Pro Patria. Another legend holds that the Napoleon Health Spa is so named because it proved a curative resting place for some of the French emperor’s soldiers, either injured on some bloody battlefield or simply weary from long marching.

Eleven springs provide Health Spa Resort Thermia Palace with its sulfate-carbonate thermal water, which arises from 2000 metres below ground at 65-67 degrees Celsius, and therefore needs to be cooled to a more tolerable, but still hottish, 36 degrees before it can be used in pools and tubs. This cooling process is carried out by adding yet more thermal water but of a lower temperature.

The other crucial element of the healing process, the sulphurous mud, comes from a side channel of the Váh, and which then matures in a holding pond for a year before it is used for treatment in the form of thermal mud pools at 39-40°C and for partial and full body packs. Spring water and mud therapy are complemented at Irma Health Spa by electrotherapy, exercise, massage, medication and diet. Regular testing by the country’s Ministry of Health ensures that everything is kept safe and sound.

Some visitors come for a month or two, and an Arab lady once spent seven months there getting herself into better shape. Irma Health Spa promises the very best, effective therapies to treat musculoskeletal conditions, and its two natural resources are combined with first-class manual treatments and therapeutic rehabilitation services.


A team of specialist doctors and professional medical personnel is on hand to oversee the complex spa stays and treatments.

For instance, doctors will check, consult and control during guests’ stays. Disorders of the locomotive apparatus – back pain, degenerative diseases of joints, rheumatoid arthritis, scoliosis, etc. – and disorders of the nervous system – rhizoid syndromes, Parkinson’s disease, poliomyelitis, problems of vascular origin, etc. – are submitted to examination and diagnostic tests – basic laboratory tests, sonographic examination, electrocardiography examination, X-ray, bone density, waist-to-hip ratio, body mass index, etc.

A stay of two to three weeks is recommended for pain relief, improvement of stiffness, mobility and other symptoms associated with musculoskeletal diseases. There are more than 60 medical and therapeutic treatments, and other health programs offer, for example, from seven nights with 18 treatments, to nine nights with 24 treatments, to 11 nights with 30 treatments, to 13 nights with 34 treatments.

A Healthy Weight Program focuses on weight reduction combining nutritional balance with treatments for the musculoskeletal system if it has been affected by overweight. Spantastic Relax is a package offering a calming and rejuvenating experience by using the health spa’s thermal natural resources accompanied by a selection of pampering treatments. A Forever Young Week is recommended especially for seniors to regenerate and rejuvenate.

These are just some of the benefits, and we haven’t yet mentioned the salt cave, whirlpool, sauna, Scottish sprays, thermal water baths, mud baths and wrappings, rehabilitation, cosmetic treatments, manicures, pedicures, fitness programs and many different types of massage available not only to hotel guests but also to outside visitors.

The hotel has 96 rooms and 15 suites with air-conditioning, SAT-TV, wifi, telephone, safe, tea and coffee set, hairdryer, bathrobe and slippers. Our Comfort Room balcony looked out on the lovely grounds and the outdoor thermal water pool, “heated down”, as we explained, to 32-34 degrees, and thus usable all year. There is a conference/banquet room for 30 persons and nearby is a Congress Hall for 400 attendees.

The traffic-free island also has golf, tennis, bike rental and cafés. It is a soothing atmosphere, and the guests strolling around or relaxing at the outdoor cafés obviously aren’t in a hurry or stressed.

Health Spa Resort Thermia Palace *****
Address: Spa Island, 921 29 Piešťany, Slovakia
Phone: (+421) 33 775 6111
Room reservation: (+421) 33 775 77 33

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