Retiring in Style
By Leigh Stuart
Photography by Allure West Studios
At the corner of scenic Ferry and Iron Hill roads, in one of the loveliest parts of Doylestown, is a
haven for residents seeking an enriching lifestyle of safety, convenience and culture nestled among Bucks County’s pastoral charms: Pine Run Retirement Community.
Pine Run, a not-for-profit community owned and operated by Doylestown Hospital, provides a number of world-class housing options for individuals ages 65 and older, with a range of living areas including everything from independent living to personal care and rehabilitation. While Pine Run attracts people of all interests, it is especially attractive to active, community-engaged seniors such as Kathy and Peter Achorn. Kathy, a former consultant, and Peter, a former research chemist, looked far and wide for their post-retirement dream home.
“We were leaving a beautiful state and a beautiful series of homes in Connecticut, and we thought, as my mother used to say, Act in haste, repent at leisure,” Kathy says. “We didn’t want to be capricious or silly; we wanted to find a home.”
Kathy explains that she and Peter had a list of seven distinct criteria they wanted their new locale to possess: walkability, affordability, a vibrant cultural life, excellent hospital and school systems, a house of worship for them to become members of and a nearby college.
The Achorns traveled to 22 towns in seven states in their search. When they paid Doylestown a visit five years ago, they knew they’d found their new home. Peter, who earned his doctorate from Lehigh University, and Kathy, who graduated from Misericordia University in Dallas, met in their youth and got married in Pennsylvania, but somehow the charms of Doylestown had eluded them. “We used to date by taking my Volkswagen down River Road to New Hope and back, but we had never been to Doylestown,” Peter says.
“We found Doylestown first,” Kathy adds, “and then we found Pine Run.”
In addition to the bucolic setting with ready access to downtown Doylestown, Pine Run offers standard amenities including bi-weekly housekeeping, one meal per day provided by the restaurant at the community center and authorized meal delivery. In addition, cable and utilities are included, as is 24-hour security and emergency response, maintenance services and an in-unit washer and dryer, as well as home insurance and real estate taxes. “It really frees you to live carefree,” Kathy says.
Part of this carefree living entails access to top-notch medical care, as well as an excellent staff-to-resident ratio. Pine Run has approximately
300 residents in independent living, 100 in personal care, and 100 in skilled nursing and rehabilitation, all served by more than 400 associate staffers. Peter notes, “The security team [members] are skilled EMTs also, so they can answer security questions as well as respond to medical needs.”
While it is not a requirement of residents, individuals such as the Achorns have ample opportunity to customize their dwellings. From fabrics and furnishings to finishes and fixtures, Kathy and Peter played an active role in creating their Pine Run dream home. As self-described minimalists, the Achorns had only three requirements of their home: light, wood and simplicity, elements that Pine Run provided with gusto.
“That’s the miracle of Pine Run; they’ll tailor to you,” Kathy says. She adds with a laugh, “They moved heaven and earth for us—they also moved walls.”