Traverse City Record-Eagle

October 24, 2012

GT Pavilions launching new apartments

Hawthorn Lofts set to open next month

BY KATHY GIBBONS
kgibbons@record-eagle.com

TRAVERSE CITY — Grand Traverse Pavilions is getting ready to launch apartments that will add a new independent living option to its senior citizen residential services.

Hawthorn Lofts will open in November with three loft apartments on the third level of the complex's historic Hawthorn Cottage. Kory Hansen, Grand Traverse Pavilions administrator and CEO, said the space to create the lofts was freed by relocating an adult day care program to a different spot.

"It's something we have been wanting to do for a while," Hansen said. "It allows us to have the full continuum of care by adding independent living."

The Pavilions currently provides 26 assisted living apartments for older adults in Hawthorn Cottage, along with other assisted living in Evergreen and Willow cottages. Additional services include skilled long-term care, overnight respite care, rehabilitation, dementia services and health and fitness programs.

In the final stages of construction, the new units range from a two bedroom/two bath at 1,135 square feet, 2 bedroom/one bath with 1,300 square feet and an 835-square-foot studio apartment. All include full kitchens and washers and dryers. Pets up to 35 pounds are allowed.

Rents will be in the range of $2,050 to $2,550, depending on size. That price includes utilities except for cable and phone. Rates in assisted and skilled nursing run higher — at least $1,000 more on average, Hansen said.

"Being on the top floor, they have a nice view of the grounds," Hansen said. "And they would have the opportunity to add services if they needed, so that they could remain living there versus moving to a higher level of care."

Loft tenants also gain preference should they need to move into assisted living or skilled nursing care.

"Being part of the continuum of care is a bonus because you get priority to move up a level of care," Hansen said. "We're usually full and there's waiting lists and it's difficult to get in."

Pavilions Residential Services Director Penny Hanks said she's been waiting for construction to be mostly finished to begin showing the lofts, which she hopes will be in November. But even sight unseen, she said, interest has been significant.

"The continuum is the big part of it — the fact that people can age in place," she said.

Hanks also expected the lofts to appeal to couples. Rent is based on square footage — not number of occupants.

"By being on one campus, maybe one person is in this independent style of living, where somebody needs the nursing home," she said. "Now you can just walk over and visit."