Lifestyle, culture and leisure
The summer capital of Europe during the belle époque and a rendezvous for the rich and the beautiful, Baden-Baden today is famous worldwide as a spa town with a cultural tradition and a top-class reputation for healthcare. Glittering festivals and unrivalled elegance make it a byword for exclusivity, elegance and luxury living. Baden-Baden excels in everything it does, whether it's cures or culture.
Situated in beautiful countryside on the fringes of the Black Forest, Baden-Baden provides the most stylish setting imaginable for a cultural or health-related break. Baden-Baden's hot springs well up from a depth of 2,000 metres, supplying the town's twelve thermal spas, for example the modern Caracalla Therme and the historical Roman-Irish Friedrichsbad. The water, which reaches temperatures of up to 68°C, is used to treat a wide range of conditions, including cardiovascular problems, rheumatism, joint complaints, metabolic disorders and respiratory ailments. But even if you're fighting fit, Baden-Baden's waters will work wonders for your health and wellbeing. The same can be said of the deluxe hotels and the magnificent Lichtentaler Allee park with its 3km tree-lined avenue. The alabaster-white Kurhaus is a Baden-Baden landmark and one of the world's most beautiful casinos, while the Festspielhaus – Europe's second largest opera house and concert hall – provides a splendid venue for the festival held in honour of Herbert von Karajan every Whitsun. Lichtentaler Allee park is also home to the fascinating Frieder Burda Museum, which was designed by Richard Meier and opened in 2004. Regarded as one of the best collections of modern art in the world, the permanent exhibition includes such well-known names as Georg Baselitz, Max Beckmann, Anselm Kiefer, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Willem de Kooning, Markus Lüpertz, Pablo Picasso, Sigmar Polke, Jackson Pollock and Gerhard Richter. Other notable institutions are the Baden-Baden Museum, Fabergé Museum and Baden-Baden State Art Gallery as well as the theatre and philharmonic orchestra. Attracting people from all over the world, the famous horse races at the Iffezheim racecourse have been annual society events since 1858. Whatever the time of year, the beautiful old quarter is ideal for a leisurely shopping spree. Award-winning restaurants offer international specialities and refined local cuisine. Wine lovers will also appreciate the nearby wine region where, against a sweeping backdrop of vineyards, cosy inns and exquisite restaurants offer a culinary voyage of great distinction. And it must be clear by now that Baden-Baden is a destination of great distinction.
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