Thermes de Cambo-les-bains


The Spa of Cambo-les-Bains is located twenty kilometers south east of the city of Biarritz. The Spa is specialized in rheumatology and respiratory treatments. The reconditioning and the renovation of the existing spa facilities occupy a floor area of about 4200-m2 spread over 4 levels. The ground level houses 9 medical units and the bulk of the technical rooms for the pools which are located on the level above. The second level (1er étage) accommodates three large swimming pools with a capacity of 64, a mud bath with a capacity of 14, and fifteen underwater massage booths. The third floor (2è étage) contains about forty booths (mud wraps, body treatment showers, Hydroxeur, etc.).

The top level contains 72 treatment units for respiratory issues, a dozen treatment units for postural drainage and several relaxation units. As opposed to the challenge encountered in the project of Bains-les-Bains, this project needed to accommodate a high proportion of treatment facilities within a limited surface area. In order to avoid creating confined and cramped spaces, we decided to locate the greatest possible number of units along the interior periphery of the building envelope which benefits from natural light, thus opening up large volumes in the center.

This strategy minimizes the necessity for corridors and creates spacious vertical circulation points in the zones that do not benefit from natural lighting. We have worked on natural and artificial lighting, using a series of etched glass panels which have been designed especially for this project. In order to create a serene atmosphere and to preserve the character of the original spa, we have chosen a few areas where it seemed particularly interesting to keep the original flooring.

The color and material of the flooring were used as a basis for the elaboration of the space, while at the same time maintaining the feeling of pure, uncluttered space that we wanted to convey.