In 1836, the Viennese physician Dr. Josef Huber published an article on the therapeutic effects of the air in Merano.
In the mid 19th century, during the Belle Époque, Merano/Meran began developing as a spa town.
In the mid 19th century, during the Belle Époque, Merano/Meran began developing as a spa town. Because of its climate, in the years after 1850 wealthy patrons along with artists and writers came from all over Europe to recuperate in Merano and its surrounding valleys, including Franz Kafka, Franz Liszt and Stefan Zweig, as well as the Empress Elisabeth of Austria-Hungary.
The First and Second World Wars led to an economic and cultural decline, from which Merano slowly recovered after the late 1960s. Part of Italy since 1919, today half of the residents of Merano speak Italian and the other half German as their mother tongue. In addition, 20% of the town are new residents from all around the world, resulting in a unique flair, also reflected in everyday life.