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Brides-les-Bains story

Once upon a time, there was a village called Brides-les-Bains...

Located at the foothills of the Vanoise mountains, the village of Brides-les-Bains has had a somewhat unique and checkered history over the centuries. Here are some of the key milestones of this unique chronology.

Ones upon a time... Brides-les-Bains

Photo - Brides-les-Bains, Thermal resort
Since Antiquity People have known about the healing properties of the waters of what would one day become Brides-les-Bains since time immemorial...

In the XVIth et XVIIth, the archbishops of Moûtiers were already partaking of the thermal waters of the area. The medical practitioners of the day were known to prescribe astonishing quantities of these waters: in some cases, 50 to 60 glasses per day!

In 1653 and 1774, the Doron de Bozel overflowed it banks, silting up the springs.

1818 a fortuitous event led to the establishment of the modern spa: a natural disaster higher up in the valley caused the thermal springs to come back to life. The first analysis of the thermal waters of Brides-les-Bains was carried out by a certain Doctor Hybord, and the following year, the first spa treatment cabins were constructed.

1857 The village of Bains, having seceded from that of Perrière, and the village of Brides, having split from Les Allues, merged to form a new municipality: Brides-les-Bains.

During the XIXth century, the thermal waters were used to cure all kinds of ailments, until their excellent properties for fighting obesity came to light. In the late 1870s, the local hotels instituted specially designed diets. The spa, which was developing in earnest, began to attract international personalities such as Queen Elizabeth of Spain, the Countess Montgoméry and the Baron of Rothschild as well as members of leading Russian, US and English families.

1925 at the prompting of a certain Doctor Philibert, the spa, now specialising in slimming cures, rebranded itself as the ‘elegant woman's spa'. One of the thermal springs in Brides-les-Bains is nowadays named after the good doctor.

Fifty's an original skiing competition was inaugurated, the ‘Derby of the Saulire', with the first skiing slopes running along the Les Allues flank of the mountain all the way down to Brides, 2000 metres below. A few patrons of the newly opened skiing resort of Méribel would also sometimes find their way to the village.

From 1990

Photo - Brides-les-Bains, Ski resort
1992 the resort was chosen to host the Olympic village for the Albertville Olympic Games. It became a gateway to the world's largest skiing range, known as Les 3 Vallées, thanks to a cable car inaugurated during the Olympics, which links the village to the ski runs of Méribel, enabling the community to benefit from the development of a new activity.

2000 the resort became part of the les 3 Vallées association, together with the likes of Courchevel, la Tania, Méribel, les Menuires-St Martin and Val Thorens.

XXth Brides-les-Bains had established itself as France's leading thermal spa specialising in the treatment of obesity.

2005 The Brides-les-Bains Spa opened with 1500 m² set aside for treatment and wellbeing. This new facility combines luxury and innovation while capitalising on the resort's spa know-how.