Sparkling with a zest for life
On 27 September, 2010 one of the most modern thermal springs in Europe opened in Vienna – the “Therme Wien” (“Thermal Springs of Vienna”).
After just under two years of construction time and three months prior to the original completion date, one of the most modern urban thermal springs in Europe opened on 27 September 2010 in Wien Oberlaa: the “Therme Wien” (Thermal Springs of Vienna), a 115 million Euro project. “The new Therme Wien is an excellent example of us pursuing economic policies in Vienna. People, the economy and the town should benefit from it. The new Therme Wien improves quality of life, is a driving force for economic growth and secures long-term jobs. Around 400 people were involved in the completion alone. With immediate effect, the new Therme Wien will offer about 300 jobs, of which 100 of them are new positions. It is projects like this that develop the town,” states City Councillor of Finance and Commerce Vice Mayor Mag.a Renate Brauner.
Dr. Ernst Wastler, General Manager of VAMED AG: “As the market leader in domestic tourism for thermal springs and health facilities, VAMED - with seven VAMED Vitality World resorts and around two million guests per year - has first-class knowledge both with the construction as well as the operation of spa and health facilities. With the comprehensive, complete range of facilities of the new Therme Wien, we are covering the areas of prevention, wellness and rehabilitation under one roof and have created an integral health and spa centre in the middle of Vienna - in a completely new dimension. Europe‘s largest urban thermal spring sets new standards in the range of spa and health facilities for the Federal capital, Vienna, and in Austrian thermal spring and health tourism.”
Thermal springs of Vienna: Various different facilities on offer
On a total surface area of over 75,000 m², the new thermal spring won’t just offer world-class architecture and appealing designs, but also numerous new facilities. A grotto pool, a whirlpool, Finnish saunas, steam baths, wide flumes, and tyre and adventure slides, diving platforms, massage tables, as well as daily children’s animations and Austria’s first thermal spring library are all part of the comprehensive range of facilities on offer. Therme Wien Director Dr. Edmund Friedl explains: “Therme Wien consists of five bathing areas, which sit like ‘stones’ by a stream. In these ‘stones’, such as the ‘Stone of Tranquillity’ or the ‘Stone of Experience’, there are different attractions. Regardless of whether you are looking for peace, relaxation or adventure, every guest to Therme Wien is given the opportunity to find his or her own rhythm.“
Architecturally, the thermal springs floor plan was based on a stream. The project by Wien Oberlaa Projektentwicklung GmbH, a subsidiary of Wien Holding GmbH, was launched. Its tasks were, among other things, the development of an overall plan and master plan for the whole area "Oberlaa NEU". Wien Holding’s Director Dipl.-Ing.in Sigrid Oblak: “Wien Holding’s corporate philosophy aims at creating added value for people and increasing quality of life in the town. The new Therme Wien is one of our model projects in this respect.”
The new water playground offers added value for the children of Vienna:
A sceptical glance. Little Marlene can see the water playground in the distance. The water wheels, with drops flying through the air using centrifugal force. Just like the arch with the water frog that shakes its legs and spurts out a fine spray from its mouth for the purpose of cooling down. A few moments later, Marlene is standing in the midst of the action, splashed by the floor jets, which let the water spurt out of the floor, like a little gusher. Laughing and really chirpy. No more trace of scepticism. The water playground in the outdoors area of the new Therme Wien has won another fan.
While the adults recharge their batteries in the extensive relaxation areas and saunas, children can play in the newly constructed thermal spring in Oberlaa.
Everything with the water element
The so-called Stone of Adventure is a place of high spirits, guaranteeing - especially for the younger ones - a specially-designed area, where visitors to the thermal spring are not disturbed from their peace and quiet. For the brave ones, there is the stream. A wide chute was built by the German manufacturer Wiegand-Mälzer (www.wiegand-maelzer.de) for inside and outside, and also two chutes which, at over a hundred metres in length, flow into the inner area of the thermal spring.
Right next to it, a water playground brings completely new perspectives into play with the wet aspect. With moving water cannons and floor jets, the kids can try to meet up with one another, a water flower spits out its “sap” at irregular intervals which then gently gets washed away with the rain. An oversized banana leaf protrudes from the ground spraying out a wonderful mist. “The children can experience the different outward forms of the water, how it feels if there is a squirt or if the mist wets the skin,” explains Hubert Sandler, who built the water playgrounds in Therme Wien with his company Algebra. “It is great to find out how the water changes its strength or goes in different directions. This means that the little ones can become familiar with the element.”
For the smaller children, in the inside area, a special pool was created. In the Lazy River the kids can just drift about under the supervision of their parents. In this pool, which is only 30 centimetres in depth, they are moved on a pneumatic tyre by a really gentle current under a rainbow where a water curtain gushes from a pillar like dew dripping from a leaf. And an island protrudes out the middle. In case the smaller ones want to relax in Therme Wien, too...
Photos: Therme Wien (Thermal Springs of Vienna), Algebra Spielplatzbetreuung GmbH (playground support)