The new trend in retirement living that’s taking off in Australia

When you retire and start thinking about downsizing, one of the biggest choices you face is what to do next.
Aveo's Bella Vista vertical retirement village is an example of the retirement cities trend. Credit: Aveo

When you retire and start thinking about downsizing, one of the biggest choices you face is what to do next.

If you’ve considered retirement village living, you know just how many variations there are – accommodating for all sorts of independent lifestyles.

But, it turns out there is a new style of retirement village taking off in Australia, and instead of expanding out, they’re going up.

That’s right, vertical retirement villages are in demand at the moment

You might be wondering what a vertical retirement village is?

Well, it’s basically a medium-rise, multi-story retirement village, offering multiple apartment living options for retirees along with all the amenities most retirement villages offer.

Several Australian companies have already ventured into vertical retirement villages, including Aveo, Stockland and LendLease with numerous projects around the country.

So what’s driving the demand for vertical retirement villages?

Mary Wood executive director of the Property Council of Australia’s Retirement Living Council told the Australian Financial Review the vertical retirement project trend was following the demand in the broader market for multi-storey living

“Older Australians are much more used to apartment living than previous generations, as is the general community,” she said.

“This explains why a lot of the innovation in retirement living is in urban, high-density areas.”

Aveo CEO Geoff Grady said Australia was at “the cutting edge” of retirement living and care around the world.

“Creating vertical retirement communities is the logical solution by offering retirees a modern, low-maintenance lifestyle and with care and service offerings available in the one location as and when they need it,” he said.

“Retirees are just as discerning about location and access to amenities as any other buyer, and as such, they are looking for residential offerings that allow them to continue their current lifestyle.

“We know that people who have been living in middle-ring suburbs are often looking to remain in the same locale – so we’ve provided retirees with quality apartment living, allowing more people to continue to enjoy the lifestyle they love with the added confidence of being able to age in place.”

Now you know what’s driving the trend, you might be wondering if there’s any benefit to living in a vertical retirement village.

According to the operators and developers, there are.

Speaking about Aveo’s Bella Vista project in Sydney, Mr Grady said it had been designed as a “lively, friendly village” with modern, low-maintenance living and additional care services.

“The village will boast an array of first-class amenities for both residents and the broader community to enjoy,” he said.

“These include cafes, a health and wellness centre, gym, sensory gardens and a lake surrounded by an extensive boardwalk.”

If vertical retirement villages sound like something you’d be interested in, they’ll soon be popping up everywhere.

Aveo’s Bella Vista project, for example, is due for completion in late 2017.

Does the concept of vertical retirement village interest you? Is it something you would consider living in?

  1. Trish  

    No because pets are too important to me and allowing them is even more unlikely in a village like this.

    • Jeanette Grant  

      In NSW the Strata Management Act includes By Laws which require Owners Corporations ( Body Corporates) to allow a companion animal eg bird, dog, cat etc. there would need to be a very good reason for them to refuse you and then you can appeal that decision . We live in a 14 apartment complex. So relaxing, feels like every day is a holiday. Beautiful gardens to enjoy but we don’t have to weed or cut lawns. This is the way of the future but each to her/ his own.

    • Bernard McShane  

      That idea is wrong we live in high rise apartment in Southbank Melbourne we have a little dog who was bought up in Narrewarren and our sons frenchie he is now 12 months old and the outher one is now 11 yrs and we love it with good parks Cafes shopping 5 minutes on tram from city we rented a apartment in cbd for 6 months before we bought and loving it

  2. Wayne Watkins  

    Morans have almost completed a huge retirement complex on Old South Head Road Vaucluse which is opposite the cemetery . Very handy for future inhabitants as it will be like God’s waiting room .

    • John Brants  

      That is funny. My answer is still no and no.

  3. Joy Anne Bourke  

    Trish I agree with you. In Qld there are too many that are not pet friendly. I could not live in a high rise. Never had to but certainly have no intention of living that way. This would be too confined for me. I have a poodle and like a little back yard.

  4. If pets are important to you, the single level villas in the 50s+ complexes are a better bet. We are in one at present. Lots to do.

  5. Joy Saker  

    In principle I like the idea of a high rise. The Aveo village I am living in has raised this concept as a future development for us, and it could be good for us, BUT

    Cars will no longer be at the door for unloading shopping – how many trips up in the elevator to unload, and who provides the shopping cart to do that? If us, where do we keep these carts?

    With up to six times the number of people iiving on the same ‘footprint’, that means six times the traffic through the village on roads we currently use as pdestrin access The public road outside the village is narrow. Only two buses a day in and out. Will they negotiate more frequent bus services for us with the City Council?

    I could go on for hours with questions

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