Brighton Gardens

 Outdoor seating area at Brighton Gardens

Outdoor seating area at Brighton Gardens

Last week I had the pleasure of touring Brighton Gardens, an assisted living community, with Sue Erim, the Director of Sales.  Sue has been at Brighton Gardens since it became a Sunrise Senior Living Community thirteen years ago.  Her love of the community and passion for seniors was obvious throughout the tour.

Brighton Gardens has 106 assisted living apartments and 24 memory care apartments (those are located on a special memory care floor).  There are seven floors, but each floor has a large terrace, and there is common outdoor space on the first floor (there are even raised garden beds for residents to use).  Many of the residents are still very independent.

 An outdoor terrace at Brighton Gardens

An outdoor terrace at Brighton Gardens

Perhaps the most special thing about Brighton Gardens is its location.  It is located in the heart of Friendship Heights.  Residents can easily walk to grocery stores, restaurants, and the metro.  It is also right next door to the Friendship Heights Village Center.  The Village Center is a community center for all ages, but many of the activities reminded me of what senior villages offer.  Books clubs, exercise classes, lectures, concerts, etc. go on there every day of the week.  Brighton Gardens has its own vast array of offerings, but if residents want to go off site, they merely need to go next door for lots more to do, with people of all ages.

There is a farmers market at the Village Center on Saturday mornings, and outdoor concerts every Wednesday when the weather is nice.  If residents are unable to walk to the concerts, Brighton Gardens will even bring them out in their wheelchairs.  Shuttle transportation to various places is offered through the Village Center and through Brighton Gardens.

Brighton Gardens is a leasing community, meaning there is no buy-in to live there.  You can rent an apartment month-to-month.  There is an initial one-time move-in fee of $7500.  The monthly fees were very similar to other places I’ve visited—base rent starts around $7000 a month (the exact rent depends upon the size of the apartment), plus extra monthly fees for residents that need extra help.  The base rent includes three meals a day, afternoon social hour, weekly housekeeping (plus daily making of the bed and emptying trash).  There’s also a weekly towel and linen service.

There’s an emergency lifeline pendant provided to each resident, and RNs and LPNs are in the community twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week.  The daily bed-making and trash emptying service has the added benefit of someone checking on residents in their apartments in an unobtrusive way every single day.

All kinds of doctors and therapists come to Brighton Gardens, so that residents don’t need to leave the community for doctors’ appointments.  They even have a lab come twice a week for residents that need bloodwork or urinalysis.  Even if a resident is nearing the end of his/her life, they are able to bring in hospice to help care for the resident, so that the resident doesn’t have to leave the community.

Brighton Gardens offers great assisted-living amenties, while its location allows one to still be quite independent.