Domburg has the title of "beneficial seaside resort" since 2013. This coastal town meets the international Thalasso criteria of the European Spa Association (ESPA). A seaside resort only gets this recognition when the healing benefits of the seawater and the climate are declared beneficial.
Already in Roman times, Domburg was known as a "spa resort". Multiple thermal baths from that time have been discovered after archaeological excavations. In addition, Dr. Mezger, founder of modern physiotherapy, opened a practice in Domburg in 1868. His fame earned him patients in particularly, like empress Elisabeth (Sissi) of Austria, lord Lionel Walter Rothschild from Great Britain, empress Eugénie (spouse of Napoleon III) of France and Queen Elisabeth zu Wied of Romania.
A prerequisite for the official recognition is the presence of beneficial thermal water, or other natural basic substances. Furthermore, the location must be situated in a green, healthy environment, medical procedures must be able to be given (by a spa doctor) with the thermal water, and the presence of adequate leisure facilities such as a spa park and an open air theater is a must.
The criteria handled by the European Spas Association (ESPA) are:
1. Use of natural resources of the environment, culture and climate.
2. A local healing agent can be applied.
3. Situated in an attractive natural environment.
4. A medical and therapeutic approach.
5. Infrastructure adapted to a vitality and health center.
6. Proven concepts of the bathing culture, such as Kneipp, Felke, Thalasso, sea baths.
7. High standard services
8. The location is a symbol for a positive life, cleanliness and pleasure, joy of life and lifestyle.
9. Programs and treatments tailored to the individual.
10. The possibility to socialize, and relaxing activities.
A natural and healthy environment
Seawater, sea air, climate and soil products all play a bath status role. The seawater at Domburg was examined by a renowned international Institut. The sea turns out to be sufficiently "Sole" (salty) due to the special composition, and thanks to physical features.
Since then, Domburg may officially call itself a "seaside resort". This bath status is a recognition for a place, and is considered a quality seal. The "Bath" recognition in foreign countries, especially Austria and Germany, is associated with strict regulations. Domburg and Cadzand are the first, and only two coastal towns in the Netherlands with this official title.