Mr Joaquín Davila Y Mariño, born in Puebla del Caramiñal, public notary in the town and jurisdiction of Caldas de Reis, built the Dávila bathhouse in 1.780.
Honoring his first surname, and without knowing the reason for the transcription Davila to Dávila, he named this business Dávila Bathhouse. The bathhouse had three pools: One of them had a capacity for 12 people and the water was at 38º, these were the so called “spicy baths”. A smaller one with room for 6 people, where the water was at 32º. The third one, also for 6 people had water at 28º (mild bath).
In 1880, with his niece María del Carmen Villa Noguerol in charge of the business, the bathhouse undergoes a major renovation, the Dávila bathhouse becomes Dávila Spa. The pools were closed and the building got 6 individual rooms with marble bathtubs in order to preserve the privacy of the bathers, 1 room provided with a seated bath with vaginal shower, 2 rooms dedicated to respiratory treatments, a cooling room and a medical consultation room.
After several years working as the Dávila Spa, but due of the pressures from the big colony of bathers that wanted to sleep in the same place where they received their water treatment, the owners of the springs (Mr. David Legerén Cespón and his wife Mrs. Joaquina Paz Villa) decided to build a place to accommodate them it and renovated the main building. The Hotel was inaugurated in 1923 and has been the Spa Hotel Dávila ever since.
In the year 1998, with Mrs. Ana María Legerén Bayón and Mr José Legerén Leirós as the owners of the property and Mr Juan José Pereira Legerén running the business, the latest renovation (up to date) took place. The interiors of the hotel were demolished while the spa remained untouched. With a special emphasis in the conservation of the environmental and historical value of the building the renovation updated the building to the demands of the times, providing it with heating and bathrooms in every room.
The living room, with its early XX century chairs, still keeps the secrets of the “language of the hand fans” which were used by the high society ladies in their “debutante balls”, in which the attendants must wear something red, taking the name “red ball”.
It’s also worth mentioning the conservation of the original instruments, adquired in 1880 and still being used today, providing bathers the same therapeutic quality that has made the waters of Dávila a reference since its founding.
The use of the mineral-medicinal waters of the Dávila Spa is documented from the earliest times, as evidenced by the finding in the well of the spring: a votive altar prior to Roman domination. A reproduction that presides over the façade of the spa, which has the following inscription: "EDOVIO ADALVS CIOVTAI VSLM" (Adalo or Adaio, son of Clovtai, willingly fulfilled the vow offered to Edovio) Adalo or Adaio, son of Clovtai (ante-roman name) in gratitude to Edovio (regional God who, was believed to warm the waters).
One of the roman roads passed through Caldas and the legionaries probably used this waters to cure the fatigue of the trips and the battles.
Over the centuries, the people used these waters for therapeutic purposes, guided by experience rather than by technical indications. The thermal spring, which in principle and like many others was a simple pond, was endowed with a receptacle to collect the abundance of the spouting stream, providing it with pipes for an easier collection.
For many years it was a custom to carry the water from the springs to the homes to bathe with it, following a tradition, undoubtedly born in the middle ages when water was used by the residents and guardians of the existing tower and fortress. where today is the Villa de Caldas de Reis.