It’s Showtime for one Senior Living Community

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Senior Retirement Community MagazineExcitement is building at Martins Run Senior Living Community in Media, Pa., where a true Renaissance is underway with the addition of a new, state-of-the-art Energy Club and completely redesigned apartments, dining rooms and public areas. Residents of the nearly 30-year Delaware County, Pa. fixture are taking full advantage of areas that have already been revamped, and are anxiously anticipating the completion of renovations to other areas in the near future.

The Martins Run Renaissance began in 2007 with the addition of the Lodge, a stately game room and meeting place, but it has kicked into high gear this year with a number of new projects. Much to the delight of residents, the new luxury theater, featuring plush seating, a large projection screen and surround sound, debuted this spring, making for a comfortable, high-quality movie going experience right on campus.

The community has also begun offering one- and two-bedroom “signature” apartment homes, newly designed and constructed with attention to the smallest detail, such as fashionable pendant lighting, bamboo flooring and elegant raised maple cabinetry. Additional enhanced features in the new apartments include walk-in closets, frameless showers and energy efficient “low E” windows and patio doors.

Two of the most eagerly anticipated upgrades, new dining venues and the new Energy Club, are currently under construction. The remodeled Terrace dining room, set to open this fall, will allow diners to serve themselves at leisure in a casual café setting that features upscale demonstration cooking. Meanwhile, the Fireside dining room will offer a restaurant-style experience with a full-service wait staff. No matter which venue the residents choose, they will be treated to inspired cuisine thoughtfully prepared by gourmet chefs.

The Energy Club, scheduled to open in 2010, is already creating a buzz throughout the community. The fitness phenomenon will feature a heated, indoor swimming pool, two exercise rooms — one for strength and toning and the other for aerobic conditioning, spacious locker rooms and a fully stocked juice bar café. The recent groundbreaking ceremony for the new facility was well-attended by many residents who are thrilled about the new opportunities for physical fitness that the Energy Club will bring.

Ethel Hamburger is one of those residents. Ethel, who used to belong to an off-campus gym but has since dropped her membership due to the amount of fitness options available onsite, is looking forward to swimming and taking water aerobics year-round, something that was impossible before with only an outdoor pool. She is also happy about the additional space that the club’s two exercise rooms will provide.

“Our current fitness club is great, and I take advantage of all of the aerobics classes offered there,” says Ethel. “But this new club will be much larger, and having the pool available all year instead of just the summer months will make it very convenient.”

Ethel, newly elected as resident trustee to the Martins Run board along with fellow residents Barbara Wald and Blanche Rednor, has been an active member of the community since she and her husband, Irvin, moved there two years ago. In addition to aerobic and yoga classes, she is involved in the knitting club, drama club, the “Stitches for a Cure” group that makes pillowcases for children and women with cancer, and the “Dancing Divas” dance group. She was also responsible for organizing a centenarian celebration in honor of those in the community aged 100 and older.

When Ethel and Irvin decided to look for a senior living community, they explored a number of different options, including the possibility of returning to Maryland, where they had lived for many years. After visiting several communities, they felt most at-home at Martins Run, even though it was a good distance from their daughter, who lives about an hour away. “When we visited, the staff and residents here were very friendly. At some of the other places, they didn’t even seem interested in us. That made a big difference,” says Ethel.

Ethel also credits the dining options as a factor in their decision. “We made sure to have a meal at each of the communities we visited, and found that the food here was superior to most of the other places,” she says. “They’re also very accommodating in the dining room, which is important when you’re eating there every day.”

“Overall, this is an extremely warm and friendly place, and I’m thrilled to be here during such an exciting time,” says Ethel.

Ethel’s fellow board member and Martins Run Residents Association President, Sadie Hofstein, is also excited about the renaissance. As the voice of the community’s residents, Sadie was instrumental in bringing the changes to the community. “When people come to a retirement community, they always ask about the swimming pool. An indoor pool is important. The addition of the Energy Club will keep us on par with other communities. That and the other upgrades are imperative for now and for the future,” says Sadie.

A former social worker and expert on parent education and child development, Sadie moved with her husband to the Pennsylvania community from Long Island, N.Y. eight years ago. Although many of their friends were considering moving to a nearby life care community that had yet to be built, Sadie and her husband chose their current home partly to be closer to their son, who lives in Merion, Pa. “We liked Martins Run because it was smaller than many other communities and it was very, very friendly,” says Sadie.

When Sadie’s husband died unexpectedly one month after their move, “I thought these were going to be the worst years of my life,” she says. However, Sadie found strength in the kindness, caring and support of the residents and staff, and quickly realized that she was part of an extended family at the community. “I’m glad I came here. I have been very content,” she says. “Martins Run is a wonderful place that is very well-run.”

The aspect of the Renaissance that Sadie is most looking forward to is the indoor swimming pool, which will include a ramp, and the new exercise facilities. But she is also looking forward to the variety of options that the dining upgrades will bring. “We will have both kosher and non-kosher dining, which is something that both current and prospective residents have been asking for,” she says.

For Ethel, Sadie and other current and future residents, one thing is certain: the Martins Run Renaissance is the dawn of a new age in retirement living.

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