FROM THE PLATEAU OF LA VERSOIE TO THONON’S WATER, IT’S A LONG STORY…
To learn the story of Thonon’s water, visit Mont Hermone and follow the
water course underground to where it gushes forth on the plateau of La
Versoie. It’d only take 3 or 4 years.
If you’re in more of a hurry, go to La Versoie Fountain and follow the quotes inscribed in its base, each one telling part of its history.
Water of Thonon...
The diuretic and detoxifying properties of Thonon’s water, drawn from geological layers of fine sand and gravel: Even the Romans knew about it in their time. But it was not until 1864 that the water, then called La Versoie, was declared to be of Public Interest, and 1890 when it was recognised as a Public Health spring by the Académie de Médecine.
This prayer by St. Francis de Sales was no idle wish. Miss Joséphine Antoinette de Lort would fulfil it in 1852, donating the spring to the City of Thonon. 30 years later, the City created the first catchments and built the 1st thermal bath.
« Fontaine de la Versoie »
Marie-Françoise Constantin also heeded St. Francis de Sales’ call, asking for a 10 L/mn spout to be installed at the hospital and a public fountain to be created next to the Thermal Park. Replaced in 1937 by Louis Moynat’s creation and decorated by an André Lhote mosaic, it continues to give water for no charge.
" Living water, happy water, humans have praised your name " - Anna de Noailles
And it has lasted two centuries, with the Belle Epoque seeing the glory days of thermal baths as high society that came to take the waters in the countryside. This was followed after the wars by a boom in thermal tourism for medical treatment, wellness, and fitnessthemed holidays.
Bottles of natural water, which travel all over the world.
And a story that continues to be written, as it unfolds.