With Australians living longer, healthier lives than ever before, retiring no longer necessarily means slowing down.
While some will choose to stay in their family home or downsize to an apartment or townhouse as they get older, for those who want to be part of a like-minded community, a retirement village is a logical answer.
But while the traditional benefits of retirement living such as a community connection and maintenance-free living remain strong attractions, the next generation of retirees is looking for more.
“They want an individual and unique experience in retirement living, instead of a one-size-fits-all approach,” explains Glen Brown, CEO of Reside Communities, a specialist operator of retirement communities.
“Today’s retirees greatly value maintaining their independence and freedom to pursue the opportunities that matter to them.
“With this, we are seeing increased demand for more variety and choice when it comes to services and activities.”
Retirees are also proactive about planning for the future, with great demand for future-proofed homes that can adapt to changing care or mobility needs, Brown adds.
Reside Communities is catering to the changing demand for retirement living on the Gold Coast by developing a community uniquely tailored to the needs and expectations of local retirees.
Its latest retirement community at Hope Island is being created following consultation with locals about exactly what they wanted in a retirement home.
Situated in a central waterfront location at 2 Sickle Avenue – right across the road from new shopping, dining and medical services – the community will deliver age-appropriate, high-quality living options designed to promote independence and community.
The project will have two and three-bedroom apartments surrounded by exclusive facilities that include a cinema, pools, gym, art studio, restaurant, private dining room, health and wellness facilities, and a future retail precinct for residents and the wider community.
Residents will also be able to choose from a range of five-star lifestyle and support services and care solutions for their current or future needs.
The Hope Island development will feature more than a hectare of green space and walking paths to connect buildings and provide communal spaces where residents can come together.
“Many focus group participants who are currently living in townhouse and apartment complexes reported feeling isolated and lacking interaction with their neighbours, so having a strong sense of community and regular opportunities to engage with others is a top priority for our future residents,” says Brown.
“We want to create a community where our residents are empowered to live every day on their own terms while having everything they need for healthy, active and supported living right at their fingertips.”
Each Reside community is unique to its location and residents, but all focus on delivering services and experiences that exceed the expectations of modern retirees.
For Jean Liset, a resident of Reside Communities’ Brookland Retirement Village in Robertson, in Brisbane’s south, driving through the gates of the community for the first time was enough to feel like she was “coming home”.
Though initially tentative about moving into a retirement community after downsizing from her four-bedroom family home and deciding unit living wasn’t the ideal solution, she is delighted to have made the move two and a half years ago.
“I was living on my own before and while there were people in the upstairs and downstairs units, we didn’t talk about our personal lives and they didn’t know I was sick or needed help,” says Liset.
“The staff and management here are really like family. My family don’t worry about me now that I am here. I really am at peace.”
As well as making new friends, Liset keeps busy playing scrabble and learning to play canasta, and participating in craft, knitting and a singing group.
“You can choose to do what you like, and I can see that residents are definitely more involved now [since Reside has taken over management] than they used to be,” she says. “It’s a place of peace.”