IN 1723, Matej Bel, a polymath of note, listed 137 spa towns and baths in Slovakia. Today, only 22 remain. This astonishing figure does not indicate a decline in the number mineral springs; rather it is only the spas that have disappeared.
Over the years, baths emerged in many towns and villages, but only the largest have survived. Since most spas have long since disappeared or fallen into ruin, historical postcards are often the only means of preserving the memory of the beauty and elegance of these buildings which were mainly patronised by local nobility or prominent foreign guests.
The spa complex at Hodejov lies in the southern Gemer region. Note the interesting wooden decoration on the facade. Sometimes entire ornamented wooden colonnades could be found in such spas. Unfortunately, none of them has survived.
Hodejov Spa opened in the first half of the 19th century. There were eight dwellings and nine bath cabins. It was destroyed during the Second World War.
This postcard dates from the 1920s.
7. Jul 2008 at 0:00 | By Branislav Chovan