Silver Service Excellence: Businesses Elevating the Retirement Experience

Paradise Pointe

As baby boomers continue to age, the number of people 65 and older will reach almost 81 million by 2040, predicts the US Administration on Aging. That’s a soaring 44% increase from what it is now.


Aside from creating a new demographic, this ‘silver tsunami’ of retirees is having a major impact on new products and services — and especially the retirement and assisted living (AL) industry. It is a market predicted to reach more than $133 billion by 2028, according to a US Assisted Living Market Insights Report.

SENIOR LIVING AMENITIES — Today’s seniors are more active, living longer…and looking for much more than a place to grow old when they (or their family members) are searching for a retirement center. They want special amenities, such as:

  • Restaurant-style dining
  • New technology
  • Social and recreational environments
  • Community and cultural events
  • Advanced learning classes

And they also want a location where they can ‘age in place’ for the remainder of their lives — from independent to assisted living and possibly memory care, according to the operators of local facilities.

Mothers Day Tea Party at Seashore Senior Living
Water Aerobics at Seashore Senior Living

SENIOR CENTERS — Florida has one of the highest percentages of seniors (about one in five residents), making it a prime target for the AL industry. There are more than 3,000 such facilities throughout the state, including many in Volusia County. Resident ages vary, but average in the mid to late 80s.

One of Volusia’s newer facilities is Paradise Pointe in Ormond Beach, owned by a group of local physicians, nurses and community leaders. There is fine dining, a wellness center, a salon & spa, a billiard room and a movie theater complete with lounge seating. Social activities, trips and educational classes are posted on video screens throughout the complex. The 18-acre campus incorporates activities into the outdoors with shuffleboard courts, gazebos, walking trails and even a fishing pond. Nurses are provided around the clock.     

Chief Executive Officer Darlinda Copeland notes that Paradise Pointe also holds an Extended Congregate Care (ECC) license, which “allows us to provide more complex clinical care so that our residents can age in place. We have a robust activities schedule and are looking for ways to keep individuals as independent as possible, but we have help nearby when needed.”

Seashore Senior Living, an assisted living facility in New Smyrna Beach, has many of the same amenities — gourmet dining, salon, outings, movies and live entertainment — and even a swimming pool for residents who are capable to practice aerobics and physical therapy. “We provide an environment that promotes independence and living life to the fullest,” comments Executive Director Melissa Marton. “Seashore also offers a memory care unit that focuses on stimulation without behaviors,” she says. “We have a relaxing common area where aromatherapy can be enjoyed; the halls are lined with mind-stimulating hangings. We focus on color, texture, smell and sound to engage our memory-impaired clients.”

Melissa Marton

ADVANCED TECHNOLOGY is a growing expectation of incoming residents at senior centers. “I think this advancement is being driven by families who are more technology savvy,” Ms. Copeland says. “They are looking for opportunities in technology to keep their family members healthier and out of the hospital. Paradise Pointe uses an advanced technology where residents wear lightweight wristbands that provide them 24-hour communication with care-giving staff as well as access to their apartments and community rooms. The wristband’s Artificial Intelligence keeps a record of the resident’s normal activity patterns, such as eating, walking and sleeping. This enables early detection of any possible health issues when patterns change.            

Ms. Marton notes that more senior facilities are adopting technology similar to hospitals, “with rolling computers or tablets to log all actions taken while with residents. And we do have the technology of using phones for medication assistance.”

Paradise Pointe Resident Space

ASSISTED LIVING COSTS — Nationally, the median cost for an assisted living apartment is about $4,800, and in Florida and Volusia County, it is about $4,200, according to A Place for Mom, a national senior care referral service. But there are many variables, based on the location, size of the unit and level of service and needed care. And most costs, if not all, are not covered by Medicare or health insurance. “With rising costs, balancing costs is difficult,” comments Ms. Marton at Seashore Senior Living. “We do local rate research to be comparable to others in the area,” she adds. 

“Senior living is definitely expensive, and we have chosen products and services that are not the cheapest,” comments Ms. Copeland. “The cost for our technology is also expensive, but again, it saves money for all of us long term if we can prevent infections, falls, ER visits and hospitalizations.”