Tag Archives: ABHOW

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Photos: See Repositioning Results at The Terraces at Los Altos

The end of a long-term repositioning project at ABHOW’s The Terraces at Los Altos has arrived, and the final results are spectacular. The three-phase project’s construction first started in the summer of 2012 when ABHOW chose to move forward with revitalization plans at one of its oldest communities.

The first phase of repositioning included new memory support and skilled nursing units. A second phase added assisted living and commons areas. And a third phase created 87 independent living units, more commons areas and a parking garage at the campus in Los Altos, Calif.

The campus now features a total of 105 independent living units, 30 assisted living units, 16 memory support suites and 30 skilled nursing beds. The repositioning kept the community’s buildings small by intention in order to reflect the location of the campus within a large-yet-intimate residential area.

The impact of repositioning at The Terraces at Los Altos was evident even before the project’s completion. It earned recognition as the Best Repositioning of 2015, according to Senior Housing News. Now that the project is fully complete, The Terraces at Los Altos will move forward as one of California’s premier Life Plan Communities.

Greystone served as development consultant throughout repositioning at The Terraces at Los Altos. See photos of the completed community in the gallery below. Learn more about The Terraces at Los Altos.

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Video: 10 Ideas From The Greystone Event 2016

The Greystone Event 2016 featured speakers from across the senior living industry sharing messages relevant and helpful to today’s providers. We pulled out some of the ideas shared at this year’s Event and edited them into a brief highlight video.

See the highlights using the video player below:


  1. The Senior Living Landscape is Shifting (Mark Andrews, Greystone)
  2. We Must Change the Perception of Senior Living (John Spooner, Greystone)
  3. Demand is Skyrocketing Across Levels of Care (Stuart Jackson, Greystone)
  4. Non-Profits Must Accelerate Their Pace (Mary Munoz, Ziegler and Diane Hood, Mary’s Woods at Marylhurst)
  5. Mission Drives Affiliation (John Cochrane, Cornerstone Affiliates)
  6. Strength, Balance and Proximity Make Affiliation Work (Randy Stamper, ABHOW)
  7. Serving the Middle Market Requires Discipline (Bud Green, Greystone)
  8. Design Supports Culture (Sue Plasterr, Greystone)
  9. Celebrate With Prospects (Mary Jane Fitts, Greystone)
  10. We’re in This Together (Diane Hood, Mary’s Woods at Marylhurst)


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The Terraces of Boise

The Terraces of Boise Captures Mayor’s Choice Award

The Terraces of Boise first opened last summer, and it’s already making an impression on new residents and the community at large. Each year, the city of Boise partners with the Idaho chapter of the Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) for the Building Excellence Awards. As part of the 2016 honors, The Terraces was selected as the Mayor’s Choice Award winner.

Sponsored by American Baptist Homes of the West, The Terraces is a continuing care retirement community that includes 161 independent living units, 40 assisted living units, 24 memory care suites and 48 skilled nursing beds. It welcomed its first residents in late July 2015.

Greystone’s Bud Green, who served as part of the development team for this project, recently shared his thoughts on the community:

“Many years ago, planning began on The Terraces of Boise on behalf of ABHOW. To now see the initial vision refined into a completed senior community is a joy and very satisfying for all the people involved in making this community a reality. The Terraces of Boise can now serve the seniors of Boise with quality care in an environment that provides many social opportunities for residents and their families. ABHOW will now be able to perpetuate their long history of service to seniors, but now from the significant community asset called The Terraces of Boise.”

The Mayor’s Choice Award will be officially given at the Building Excellence Awards luncheon on May 19. Click the image below to see the handout that lists and describes each winner.

See video and photos of the community.

Learn more about The Terraces of Boise.

2016 Building Excellence Awards


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ABHOW’s The Terraces at Los Altos Earns Industry Honor

Senior Housing News has announced the winners of the 2015 SHN Design Awards, and ABHOW’s The Terraces at Los Altos has been named Best Repositioning.

Located in Los Altos, Calif., The Terraces was first developed in the mid-20th century under the name Pilgrim Haven. About 15 years ago, ABHOW decided that the community needed refreshing. It renamed Pilgrim Haven as The Terraces at Los Altos in 2010, and ground broke on a significant repositioning project in 2012 — with Greystone serving as development consultant.

Read the feature from Senior Housing News to get an in-depth look at the repositioning of this ABHOW community and the motivations behind the project.

Learn more about The Terraces at Los Altos.

See photos of the finished repositioning in the gallery below.


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DDC Journal Features SantaFe, ABHOW Projects

Two Greystone clients are filling what the DDC Journal calls “Large, Unmet Demand,” and Greystone Senior Vice President Dave McDowell talked to the publication about these clients and their recent projects.

East Ridge at Cutler Bay is a SantaFe Senior Living-sponsored community in Cutler Bay, Fla., just south of Miami. East Ridge has just opened a newly repositioned health center. Here’s what Dave McDowell told DDC Journal about the project:

“The East Ridge community has been a longstanding quality provider of independent lifestyle and healthcare support for seniors. Our client, SantaFe Senior Living, found themselves with an outdated nursing home and healthcare center. To avoid this affecting their ability to deliver services consistent with their mission and core values, they elected to reposition and expand these healthcare components.”

The Terraces of Boise is a project sponsored by American Baptist Homes of the West. A new continuing care campus, it welcomed its first-ever residents in 2015. Here’s what Dave McDowell told DDC Journal about the project:

“What’s really unique about this community is the skilled care center. Designed by AG Architecture, it is the first one in Idaho incorporating a household model. There are three buildings, with each one providing services to a small group of residents. While this approach has become very popular across the country, this is the first one in Idaho embraced by the state Department of Health. Overall, this community brings innovation and a unique service setting to the seniors in this market.”

See the DDC Journal’s Spring 2016 issue for more on East Ridge and The Terraces. The feature begins on page 131.

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Marketing Strategies and Tactics: What Worked in 2015?

Greystone’s marketing team is working in markets around the country, supporting sponsors as they build relationships with prospective residents and strive to reach or maintain stabilized occupancy.

In 2015, Greystone helped these sponsors make significant gains in filling independent living units, as well as other levels of care. Here’s a rundown of some of the communities Greystone works with and strategies and tactics that led to progress at each:

The Amsterdam at Harborside

Port Washington, N.Y.

Sponsor: Amsterdam Nursing Home

Total IL Units: 229

Dec. 2014: 197 filled (86%)

Dec. 2015: 217 filled (95%)

Greystone has served as marketing consultant to The Amsterdam since it was first planned and financed. In 2015, the community’s marketing team made the push past 95 percent occupancy in independent living thanks to a focus on the following:

  • Team Development: Greystone provided The Amsterdam’s marketing team with financial training so that sales counselors could speak more fluently about the many benefits of the community’s contracts. A series of Greystone’s marketing regionals also visited the community to bring fresh voices, different perspectives and new ideas to the on-site team.
  • Resident Involvement: The Amsterdam’s residents wanted to be more involved in the marketing of the community, and they offered a number of ideas for boosting sales. Their input was incorporated into marketing, and their involvement also created an excitement and energy that translated into increased referrals. The resident marketing committee continues to meet monthly and actively participate in all marketing activities, including events, testimonials and advertisements.
  • Improved Culture: In 2015, The Amsterdam’s marketing team focused on positivity and setting short-term, attainable goals to build momentum. It sounds simple, but creating the right team culture helped propel the community beyond 95 percent independent living occupancy.

The marketing success of 2015 has allowed The Amsterdam to consider a second phase.

Learn more about The Amsterdam at Harborside.

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The Barrington of Carmel

Carmel, Ind.

Sponsor: Senior Quality Lifestyles Corporation

Total IL Units: 134

Dec. 2014: 102 filled (76%)

Dec. 2015: 122 filled (91%)

The Barrington is the first out-of-Texas venture by Senior Quality Lifestyles Corporation (SQLC), a long-time Greystone client. The Barrington enjoyed fast success that project team members expected to continue building. But, as sales reached a plateau in 2014, the marketing team focused in 2015 on breaking through and reaching 90 percent independent living occupancy. It was able to achieve that goal through an emphasis on:

  • Simplifying: In some ways, The Barrington was a victim of its own success. A wave of leads and inbound calls made it difficult for marketing team members to develop the relationships that are so important to securing sales. Once the issue was identified, strides were made to simplify the processes and refocus on relationships.
  • Prioritizing: Simplification meant making tough decisions. SQLC had made the investment in a series of lead-generating events that featured celebrity speakers. The last of these events was cancelled in favor of developing existing leads.
  • Capitalizing: The same community benefits that led to early success at The Barrington existed throughout 2015 just as they had in the blue-sky phase. The marketing team refocused on selling those benefits and the sales followed close behind.

The Barrington has never missed a covenant, and its 2015 push to 90 percent independent living occupancy makes it another SQLC success story — this time out of state.

Learn more about The Barrington of Carmel.


Miralea Phase II

Louisville, Ky.

Sponsor: Masonic Homes of Kentucky

Total IL Units: 30

July 2015: 24 filled (80%)

August 2015: 27 filled (90%)

Miralea’s first phase reached stabilized occupancy in June 2013, less than a year after opening. This success paved the way for a second phase, which adds 30 independent living apartments to the existing 90 apartments and 12 cottages. As with the first phase, these additional units met with a warm welcome from the market thanks to the following:

  • Strong Reputation: Masonic Homes of Kentucky enjoys an incredibly positive brand image in the Louisville market. Seniors know the campus, and they’re familiar with Miralea — the only Life Care community in the Louisville area. This strong reputation helped set up the marketing team for success.
  • Collaboration: The management team at Masonic Homes of Kentucky is ambitious and strategic. Led by President and CEO Gary Marsh, this management team has a vision for where it wants to go and how to get there, which means it is ready and willing to equip marketing team members with the tools and resources needed for success.
  • Momentum: The waiting list that developed after the completion of Miralea Phase I helped feed the success of Miralea Phase II. Masonic Homes of Kentucky is intent on maintaining this momentum to protect its market share.

This small Phase II expansion of Miralea makes way for a third phase, which is currently planned as a separate community on the Masonic Homes of Kentucky Campus. Called The Meadow, this new community will include 122 independent living and 40 assisted living apartments. Its Priority Program secured 280 members by the end of 2015.

Learn more about Miralea.


The Woodlands at Furman

Greenville, S.C.

Sponsor: Upstate Senior Living

Total IL Units: 132

Dec. 2014: 114 filled (86%)

Dec. 2015: 121 filled (92%)

The Woodlands at Furman enjoys a prime location, tucked at the foot of the Blue Ridge Mountains and just moments away from downtown Greenville and Furman University. As part of a concerted push to stabilized occupancy, the community’s marketing team focused on the following:

  • Urgency: The marketing team offered what they called a “Summer of Opportunity.” The Woodlands offered incentives to prospects who were ready and willing to move in within 30 days.
  • Pricing: The team also created premium pricing on units coming available that had proven most desirable. Premium pricing on premium units created a discount effect on the units with longer shelf lives.
  • Goals: Throughout the summer, 90 percent remained the goal. Reaching 90 percent in independent living would mean stabilized occupancy. This goal proved effective in part because it followed the SMART goal format: specific, measureable, achievable, results-focused and time-bound.

The Woodlands reached 90 percent occupancy on Sept. 30, at the end of the Summer of Opportunity. The marketing team didn’t stop there, pushing to 92 percent by the end of the year.

Learn more about The Woodlands at Furman.



Tulsa, Okla.

Sponsor: The William K. Warren Foundation

Total IL Units: 328

Dec. 2014: 290 filled (89%)

Dec. 2015: 294 filled (90%)

In the competitive Tulsa market, Montereau offers a campus, programs and services that seniors find attractive. In 2015, the goal was to capitalize on these offerings to move past (and remain beyond) 90 percent occupancy. To accomplish this goal, the community’s marketing team employed the following:

  • Lead Scoring: Leading scoring is a method of prioritizing prospective residents to focus on those most likely to choose a community. Montereau’s marketing team used lead scoring in 2015 to focus time, energy and resources on building relationships with its best leads.
  • Sales Training: Greystone facilitated in-depth training for Montereau’s sales team, including sessions on advanced skills like discovery, behavioral styles and effective listening.
  • Wellness: Montereau places an emphasis on the eight pillars of wellness and vitality. The marketing team partnered with health services to make on-campus wellness opportunities part of the sales pitch.

Montereau also established a premiere waitlist as the community surpassed 90 percent in independent living. Members of the premiere waitlist make a 10 percent deposit in exchange for twice-monthly meals, access to the health and wellness centers, as well as special invitations to events. The premiere waitlist gives the market a reason to investigate Montereau, which will help drive sales even after having reached stabilization.

Learn more about Montereau.


The Westerly

Wichita, Kan.

Presbyterian Manors of Mid-America

Total IL Units: 90

Dec. 2014 Filled: NA

Dec. 2015 Filled: 45

The Westerly is the independent living portion of a significant repositioning project at Wichita Presbyterian Manor. In 2015, the community’s marketing team faced the challenge of refreshing an established brand and introducing a new contract type with a healthcare benefit — a first in the area. They focused on the following:

  • Education: Working with Greystone and GlynnDevins, the community executed on a communications plan that targeted prospective customers as well as existing residents — those who would be temporarily displaced during the project. Within 12 months, Wichita Presbyterian Manor had reached the 75 percent in presales needed to trigger The Westerly’s financing.
  • Pricing: Sales continued as construction began. Second-story apartments in the three-level community lagged slightly, and so the project team developed pricing that quickly moved second-floor units and left only the more desirable first- and third-level apartments.
  • Combating Cancellations: Any in-development community is required to send 60-day letters to let depositors know completion is imminent. In Wichita, the project team brainstormed ways to avoid the cancellations that are so common when 60-day letters are mailed. The final plan was taking a leap of faith by celebrating the milestone of opening the building. The marketing team held a celebration, personally delivered the 60-day letters, and congratulated the depositors on the great decision they had made.

The Westerly opened on Dec. 2, 2015, and the community reached 50 percent occupancy in just 29 days — quite a feat considering the time of year. The positive market response and lack of cancellations have positioned The Westerly to fill well ahead of schedule. As of February 2016, the community was 70 percent full — just two-and-a-half months after opening.

Learn more about The Westerly.

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The Terraces of Boise

Boise, Idaho

American Baptist Homes of the West

Total IL Units: 161

Sept. 2015: 55 filled (34%)

Dec. 2015: 83 filled (52%)

The Terraces of Boise went through a phased opening in 2015. The first phase opened on July 27, 2015, with 80 units, the second phase opened in October 2015 with 30 units, and the final phase opened in January 2016 with 51 units. This created a unique marketing environment in which the sales team used the following strategies and tactics:

  • Express Move-Ins: Depositors who selected an apartment in the second or third phase were given the opportunity to move into a first-phase apartment temporarily until their permanent apartment was ready. This express move-in program helped accelerate early occupancy and develop momentum.
  • Experience: Community management goes all-out for move-ins. New residents get a red bow on their doors, a welcome basket, lunch, a thorough walk through and efficient close. The move-in experience feels like a special celebration, and it sets the tone for an exceptional resident experience that leads to referrals and reduced attrition.
  • Persistence: The marketing team worked urgently to push occupancy before the end of the year. They used urgency tools and depositor incentives to accelerate move-ins. In the end, the hard work and creative tools paid off as The Terraces reached 51.5 percent with 83 occupied by the end of the year.

Throughout the development and opening processes, the marketing and management teams have worked in complementary fashion to make The Terraces a place where Boise seniors want to be. Those collaborative efforts are paying off and poising the community for continued success in 2016.

Learn more about The Terraces of Boise.


The Buckingham Phase II

Houston, Texas

Senior Quality Lifestyles Corporation

Total IL Units: 106

Sept. 2015: 75 sold (71%)

Dec. 2015: 78 sold (74%)

The Buckingham is an SQLC-sponsored campus, a continuing care retirement community in the heart of Houston that enjoys a strong brand reputation and a lengthy waitlist. As the community prepared for a second phase that would include 106 independent living units, the marketing team took advantage of the following:

  • Competitive Advantage: The Buckingham enjoys a stellar reputation in the market, as evidenced by a waitlist of 20 to 30 prospective residents it’s kept for seven-plus years. This reputation, plus the community’s status as the only Life Care product in the immediate area, formed a competitive advantage that helped the marketing team clearly articulate The Buckingham’s value.
  • Intimate Events: Rather than large, seminar-style events, the marketing team held more personal dinners that included 20 to 25 prospective residents at a time. These smaller events were perfect for building on the existing waitlist and gathering momentum for The Buckingham’s second phase.
  • Technology: The community used an iPad application that allowed residents to take virtual tours of the yet-to-be-built apartments and get an in-depth idea of what their unit at The Buckingham’s second phase would look and feel like. This app proved much more effective at demonstrating the openness and spaciousness of these units than a traditional model would have.

The Buckingham’s successful second phase will expand its market share and set the community on a path for continued success.

Learn more about The Buckingham.



The Terraces of Boise

Video: Tour The Terraces of Boise From Above

New video shot by a drone provides an aerial view of the recently opened Terraces of Boise, an ABHOW continuing care retirement community. The Terraces includes 161 independent living units, 40 assisted living apartments, 24 memory care suites and 48 skilled nursing beds. It welcomed its first residents in late July.

Take the aerial tour using the video player below.

Learn more about The Terraces of Boise.

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Video: 10 Insights From The Greystone Event 2015

One of the best aspects of The Greystone Event is the impressive and diverse group of speakers who volunteer their time to discuss the senior living industry. This year’s group of speakers included CEOs of multi-site organizations, bankers who work in the capital markets, architects, actuaries, attorneys — and even Larry Minnix, president and CEO of LeadingAge.

We’ve done our best to compress hours of presentations and panel discussions into a brief highlight video. This video (embedded below) shares 10 Insights:

  1. Define Success: Mark Andrews of Greystone introduces a discussion on leadership strategies by describing the importance of defining success.
  2. Learn From the Best: Michael Gallagher is the president and CEO of AvMed, parent company to SantaFe Senior Living. He went to executives at Disney to learn about how they pursue service excellence.
  3. Grow to Secure Market Share: Gary Marsh, who leads Masonic Homes of Kentucky, sees growth as an organizational value. He believes that growth is needed to secure his organization’s position as a leader in the Louisville market.
  4. Let Market and Financials Drive Planning: Sloan Bentley discusses how she brought a new approach to master planning when she joined Lifespace Communities.
  5. Exceed Expectations: John Spooner of Greystone describes the next generation of CCRC residents and the standards against which they will evaluate senior living communities.
  6. Get Into the Concierge Business: LeadingAge’s Larry Minnix says that senior living organizations must become a friendly, helpful, responsive source of information and assistance in order to find future success.
  7. Merging Makes Financial Sense: ABHOW’s Dave Ferguson talks about the motivation behind the merger between his organization and be.group.
  8. Create a Sense of Discovery: Rocky Berg of Three: Living Architecture says that a community’s design can help choreograph predetermined moments of spontaneous experience.
  9. Surround Yourself With Experts: Dave Fields of RBC Capital Markets recommends involving professionals who can provide valuable advice as you pursue growth opportunities.
  10. Prepare for Overwhelming Demographics: Brad Paulis of CCRC Actuaries puts numbers behind conventional wisdom, sharing statistics that demonstrate just how strong the demand for high-quality senior living will be in the coming years.

See these speakers in action by using the video player below.

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Photos: Follow-Up From The Greystone Event

Each summer, The Greystone Event welcomes senior living professionals from organizations and locations around the country to Texas for three days of networking and education sessions that share best practices and industry trends.

This year’s Event kicked off with a special presentation by Dave Ferguson on the recent merger between American Baptist Homes of the West and be.group. The merger between these two non-profit senior living providers formed a new entity with nearly $1.5 billion in assets and $360 million in annual revenue. Together they serve 9,800 residents and employ 3,700 staff members at 83 total communities.

The behind-the-scenes look at this merger set the perfect tone for the rest of the education sessions, which covered other important topics, including:

  • Leadership strategies
  • The economic downturn’s current impact on capital markets
  • Executing strategic change
  • Resident expectations and the Fair Housing Act
  • Innovation in design and development
  • Finding success with healthcare brands
  • The science behind sales
  • Service quality excellence

Optimizing market share served as the theme throughout the presentations, further highlighted by an address from LeadingAge CEO Larry Minnix. As always, The Event served as a valuable mid-year opportunity to look at our industry and our individual organizations — and to consider how we can collectively take advantage of the opportunities ahead.

See photos from The Greystone Event 2015 in the gallery below. Stay tuned in August for video highlights and more content from these three days in Texas.

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Boise’s First Life Care Community Welcomes Residents

Idaho’s newest continuing care retirement community is now open. Comments from one of the first residents of The Terraces of Boise say it all:

From Susie Nystrom: “After the movers left, I closed the door to my house and entered the combination for the new owners. I said ‘goodbye house’ and ‘hello to my new adventure.’ I’m not looking back; I’m only looking forward.”

Two couples and two individuals moved into The Terraces on Monday, July 27 — the senior living community’s first day of operation. These first few residents spent their initial day at The Terraces by settling into their apartments and cottages, dining on a patio that overlooks the mountains, and breaking in the main dining room.

Sponsored by American Baptist Homes of the West, The Terraces at Boise is the first life care community in its namesake city. Construction began in late 2013, and it now includes 161 independent living apartments, 40 assisted living apartments, 24 memory care suites and 48 skilled nursing beds. Greystone served as development consultant on the project.

Learn more about The Terraces of Boise.

In the gallery below, see photos from June that show the final stages of construction.

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