There are two major spa towns in the Czech Republic. One is Karlovy Vary. The other is Marienbad. The oldest and most utilized spring in this city is Cross Spring. Although not the first spring discovered by the monks, it became one of the most popular. Its current name indicates its original demarcation – a wooden cross surrounded by stones. Its first name, however, was Salty Spring. This indicates its taste, characteristic of water high in meta-siliceous acid.
If you do not want to taste the waters, at least go to see the pavilion over the spring. In 1818, a wood and brick structure rose to cover the spring. It was somewhat Empire in design, the work of Antonín Therner. Seventy-two Ionic columns held up a copula featuring a golden cross at its summit. This work protected the Cross Spring and improved its aesthetics. In 1912-1913, a new structure arose. A new pavilion replaced the Empire design with a concrete copy featuring Art Nouveau elements.
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