The town of Jeseník, also called The Pearl of the Jeseníky Region and comfortably nestling on a hillside, is located on a picturesque spot on the confluence of the Staříč and Bělá Rivers. The town was probably founded in the 20s–30s of the 13th century on a vast gravel pit near the river confluence. The original name of the town was Freiwaldau/Frývaldov (from the German frei vom Walde“). The oldest history dates back to the early Stone Age. The first reference of Frývaldov originates from 1267. The first hydrotherapy institute in the world was established at the beginning of the 19th century in the Gräfenberg settlement, one of today s parts of Jeseník.
The Priessnitz curative spa is located in a glorious spot on the hillside of the most eastern spur of the Rychlebské Mountains, approximately 2 km from the town of Jeseník, perched on an average altitude of 620 meters above sea level in the northern tip of Silesia and Moravia. The grounds of the spa are sensitively placed in the country and dominate the whole surrounding area, providing the only view of the entire main ridge of the Hrubý Jeseník mountains. The climate is extraordinarily favourable: it is protected from three directions – eastern, western and southern by the high mountain ranges; only the northern direction is open to the Polish flat lands. The local micro-climate has been recently monitored and proved again to be very agreeable for healing the upper and lower airways, blood circulation diseases, and the nervous system. It enables healing patients at any time of the year. The Priessnitz curative spa owes its existence and subsequent fame to one man – Vincenz Priessnitz (1799–1851) who became the founder of hydrotherapy and who founded the first hydrotherapy institute in the world in Gräfenberg in 1822. Priessnitz had a God-given gift as a physician, he had intuition, extraordinary observation skills and memory, and, moreover, he introduced his ideas at the right time and in the right place.
Doctor Josef Schindler (1814–1890) was a respectable successor of Priessnitz. He took over the spa in 1853 and ran it for 38 years. Schindler’s successor was his assistant Dr. Eduard Emmel, who enhanced the therapy with other procedures, for example massages in hydrotherapy. LevGräfenberg achieved world recognition under the guidance of senior consultant Dr. Josef Reinhold (1885–1947), a great psychiatrist and psychologist, who managed to link Priessnitz’s heritage with the latest scientific achievements. The future of the spa was uncertain after the war in 1945 but fortunately it was given a chance to develop further. The Jeseník spa was privatised in 1992. It became a joint-stock company and used the name of its famous founder – Priessnitzovy léčebné lázně a. s. Jeseník (Priessnitz Therapeutic Spas, Inc. Jeseník). Its emblem carries a lion, the symbol of the victorious method of Priessnitz’s hydrotherapy, but also a lion that urges the successors of the famous water doctor to help people regain health and happiness through a combination of pure natural means and the latest scientific knowledge. Today, about 12,000 guests visit the spa every year.
he spa therapy is based on the use of natural therapeutic sources combined with the latest healing and rehabilitation methods. With the exception of therapeutic exercises, electrotherapy, hydrotherapy, and physiotherapy, the Priessnitz healing spa is typical for: Priessnitz baths, herbal and bubble baths, inhalations, electrosleep, music therapy, magnetotherapy, oxygen therapy, lymph drainage, gas injections, photo therapy, art therapy, acupuncture, computer kinesiology, and procedures of myoskeletal medicine. The physicians have their own biochemical laboratory and a laboratory examining functions of the heart and lungs including load checks and load examination circuits. The main spa houses provide non-stop medical services.
Diseases of the circulation system
High blood pressure, ischaemic heart diseases, diseases endangering the vascular system, preventative spa treatment for patients with prognostically serious risk factors (high level of lipids, high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, high level of uric acid, etc. including combinations of these risk factors endangering the cardiac vascular system).
Diseases caused by disorders of metabolism and internal secretion glands
Hyperfunction or hypofunction, conditions after thyroid gland surgery.
Non-tuberculosis diseases of the respiratory system
Asthma bronchiale, allergic diseases of the airways, chronic bronchitis, voice disorders and hoarseness, conditions after airways surgery.
Locomotive organs disorders
Painfull diseases of the tendons, muscles, insertions, non-articular, rheumatism, and painful spine syndromes.
Neuroses, neurotic states, psychosomatic diseases, psychotic states, etc.
Atopic eczema, dermorespiratory syndromes.
Disorders of function, climacteric syndrome, menstrual disorders, etc.
Treatment for children
The Priessnitz healing spa has been providing spa treatment to children since 1992 in four sanatoriums: children aged 3–6 years with accompaniment and youth in the Wolker, Maryčka and Bílý Kříž Sanatoriums, whereas children aged 6 and above in the Karolina sanatorium complex. A non-stop medical service and the service of nurses are ensured in all of the sites.
Offer of other services
Stays in the Priessnitz curative spa do not only include healing procedures but also a wide choice of active leisure time, starting in the main spa and tourist season. The international Franz Schubert piano competition, the Karel Ditters of Dittersdorf Festival, open-air concerts in the spa park in the summer and other cultural events organised in the Mirror and Congress Halls, all represent time-proven examples of cultural life. Popular among the guests are dance parties in the Indoor Garden, disco parties in the Castle Café and the traditional ball season. The spa library provides a wide range of books for borrowing. Many visitors enjoy the nice complements to the main programme – the guided walks, tourism, cycling tours, or sightseeing coach trips to more distant areas, including Poland. In winter, skiers will find ideal skiing conditions in the ski resorts in Ramzová, Na Miroslavi, Petříkov and Červenohorské sedlo. For those desirous of a less demanding activity, suitable terrain in the nearby surroundings cater to their needs. There are tennis courts, miniature golf, a fitness centre, a swimming pool, a sauna, and mountain bike hire, all aimed at sports relaxation. There is a winter stadium with an artificial playing area and a skating rink, toboggan, and ski hire. Other services include a full beauty parlour, a pedicure parlour, a nail parlour, a hairdresser, tanning, shops, a library with Internet facility, parking, etc.
PRIESSNITZ SANATORIUM ***
The Priessnitz spa is located in a picturesque spot 620 meters above sea level. This main spa building, built in 1910 in the original Art Nouveau style with stylish interiors according to the design of the Viennese architect Bauer, dominates the panoramic surroundings. The main building is connected on its left with a newer building built 17 years later. The range of the hotel and spa services provided is high quality, enabling guests to enjoy a nice stay in a spa with premium standards. The dining rooms offer both local and international cuisine, including a sumptuous choice of vegetarian and diet foods. In addition to the main spa building, there are the Medical Villa and Jubilee Villa. Guests can avail themselves of the opportunity of spending a nice time with their friends in the hospitable and friendly environment of the Denní bar (Daily Bar) or the popular Zimní zahrada (Winter Garden) where you will not only experience traditional Moravian hospitality but also the beautiful view of Zlatý Chlum with its observation tower, and the Polish flat lands. The evening dance parties further enhance the peaceful nature of the stay. Priessnitz provides hydrotherapy procedures, carbonic baths, massages, electro-sleep, magneto-therapy, and other special therapies under the professional guidance of physicians and physiotherapists.
Bezruč Spa is a newly reconstructed building with high quality accommodation facilities comprising 1- and 2-bed rooms. Most rooms have spacious balconies with a fascinating view of the Hrubý Jeseník mountain range. Meals include both Czech and international cuisine, with a choice of diet and vegetarian meals. The building itself provides inhalation therapies. The remaining procedures are provided in the nearby spa facilities.
JAN RIPPER ***The newly reconstructed Jan Ripper Spa bears the name of V. Priessnitz’s son-in-law and is located in the quiet environment of the spa centre, approximately 50 m away from the balneo-therapy building with an extraordinary view of the whole mountain skyline of the Hrubý Jeseník mountains. In addition to the main spa there is the Mír (Peace) building. This building is connected with the balneo-therapy building, comprising a sauna and most spa procedures. The dining room in the Jan Ripper building offers both Czech and international cuisine, with a choice of diet and vegetarian meals. Guests accommodated in the Mír building take their meals in the dining room of the Bezruč building, approximately 150 m away.