Photo of the spa garden in Cambo-les-Bains Basque Country

Recognized benefits

A spring exploited since Antiquity

According to popular tradition, the benefits of Cambo’s waters were already known in Gallo-Roman times.

In 1698, a simple shed covered the spring’s resurgence, on the site of today’s spa.

It seems that the first analyses of the composition of the waters date back to the early 18th century, when the Queen Dowager of Spain, Marie-Anne de Neubourg, came to drink the waters of Cambo on the advice of her Bayonne physician.

In 1746, the famous royal physician Théophile de Bordeu, who was instrumental in launching the Pyrenean spa industry, advocated treating chronic illnesses with mineral waters. The first thermal baths were built in 1761, with “twelve baths and showers, and a simple reservoir for the indigent”.

During the 18th and 19th centuries, in the wake of the Queen of Spain and under Napoleon III, Cambo attracted a host of French and foreign personalities. The small Labourd town gradually took on the amenities typical of a spa town: hotels, amusement arcades, a network of promenades, a bandstand…

In 1886, Cambo-les-Bains became a health resort, recognized for its therapeutic properties in the treatment of respiratory ailments.

Unfortunately, all that remains of this 1930 building is the fountain room. After more than 40 years of inactivity, due in particular to the sanatoriums in Cambo-les-Bains, the spa business has only resumed since the end of the 1990s. 1977It was at this time that the Société des Thermes, under the impetus of Adrien Barthélémy, gave it the configuration it knows today, this tree-lined, innovative spa estate elevated to the rank of the greatest.

Did you know ?

The establishment was destroyed and rebuilt several times, in 1820, 1876 and 1930 by French Art Deco architect Pierre Henri Sajous on the instructions of wealthy Brazilian Francisco de Souza Costa. He was also responsible for modernizing the Thermes de Cambo-les-Bains.

Satisfied with his work, the latter even asked his architect to accompany him in reproducing a facility inspired by the one in Cambo-les-Bains, Brazil: El Centro Hidroterápico Balneário de São Lourenço.