How Senior Living in New Orleans Looks Today Compared to the Past (Not Your Momma's Retirement Community)

How Senior Living in New Orleans Looks Today Compared to the Past (Not Your Momma’s Retirement Community)


Three major changes to retirement communities in New Orleans, LA

Senior living today is hardly recognizable compared to it’s 1950s counterpart. Here are the major changes that have taken the industry by storm since then.

The facilities have changed

Healthcare Segment Leader at Granger Construction, Jon Update describes the evolution of senior living facilities over the past several decades. 50 years ago, senior living communities were designed and built with one purpose: to provide for the healthcare needs of the aging population. Because the focus was primarily or even entirely on healthcare, these senior living communities didn’t look so different from a hospital or inpatient ward.

However, the introduction of Medicare and Medicaid in the 1960s led to a revolution in senior care. It was during this time that organizations began to change their vision from providing healthcare to providing a retirement lifestyle featuring comfort and luxury. And so the buildings themselves evolved; many rebuilt, including shops and services on site, restaurant-like dining rooms, grand views, peaceful walking paths, and more.

The staffing models have changed

While retirement communities of the past were staffed primarily by nurses and orderlies, today’s retirement communities have a much different schedule. Clinical staff are still important in communities where assisted living or memory care are offered, but perhaps the greatest investment is in staff selected to contribute to a luxurious retirement:

  • Life enrichment staff, who are hired to design and deliver life enrichment programs including activities, events, outings, self-care and other entertainment
  • Concierges, who are hired to ensure our residents have immediate access to everything they need, whether it’s help with groceries or dining recommendations
  • Drivers, who are hired to offer free, safe transportation to and from local shops and businesses on weekdays
  • Gourmet chefs, who design a healthy, flavorful menu and lead a team of experienced staff to prepare these meals and deliver a positive guest experience
  • Beauticians, who offer self-care in-house for resident rest and convenience
  • Security guards, who offer peace of mind during retirement years

Today, more staff are available simply for resident luxury than ever before.

Their place in the market has changed

How seniors view retirement living has evolved as communities have evolved to meet their needs. Healthcare-focused senior living communities of the past were often at odds with their own residents; that is, residents moved in because they had to, not because they wanted to. Perhaps an even greater issues was the discord resulting in families when mom or dad had to be placed in a facility for better long-term care, essentially taking away the things that brought them fulfillment at home. Retirees often asked, “Why did you do this to me?” or, “Why can’t I go home?”

Today, the vast majority of retirees we meet with are asking different questions:

  • “Can I afford this lifestyle?”
  • “What changes do I have to make to make sure I can afford this lifestyle soon?”
  • How soon can I move in?”

As we’ve been at the center of the evolution of senior care, we’ve seen these independent living communities become a luxury and a life goal for seniors in New Orleans. We’ve seen more and more seniors incorporate our communities into their retirement plans and then wait eagerly for move-in day.

The greatest benefit to these changes? Seniors today make their own choice to move in and experience the resort-style retirement they’ve earned, eliminating the hurt feelings between parents or grandparents and loved ones making decisions about their care.

To learn more about the modern amenities at The Landing at Behrman Place, schedule your visit and tour today. We’re eager to meet you.

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Sunshine Retirement Living retirement living and senior 50+ retirement communities with top assisted living and memory care facilities offering resort styled care facilities nationwide.