Posted by Springwell Senior Living on 11/27/2019

Home Sweet Homestead - Baltimore’s newest Independent Living community

Home Sweet  Homestead - Baltimore’s newest Independent Living community

Making new friends can be challenging at any age, especially when you’ve moved into a new home. That’s why Springwell Senior Living provides opportunities for new residents of The Homestead—its brand new Independent Living community—to connect and create lasting friendships.

“The first night I moved in, there was a happy hour, and there were so many lovely people at the bar, one of whom was fellow Homestead resident Joel. And we chatted, and the chatting developed into a friendship,” said resident Bayla Weisbart. “That was neat, because you’re not just existing – you have a social life.” 

Joel agreed. “The people here are wonderful. I’ve made a lot of new friends. I love everything about being here,” he said. 

Right Place, Right Time

When Springwell Senior Living in historic Mount Washington opened the doors of The Homestead in October 2018, Bayla was one of the first residents to call the community home.

“It’s the right size. It’s the right place. It’s the right time in my life to be in a community like this. I am just so pleased that I made the decision to be here,” said Bayla. 

The all-new Homestead, located on 15 lush acres, includes 99 well-appointed residences ranging in size from a one-bedroom, one-bath to a two-bedroom, two-bath corner apartment, many with patios or balconies offering stunning park views. The property features a resort-like feel and many gracious common areas such as a library, courtyard, pub, living room, dining room and education center, as well as a wide array of daily activities.

Activities for an Active Lifestyle

“The activities that are presented are very appealing to me. You get a schedule of events at the beginning of the month, and you can choose what you want to do, or where you want to go if there are trips,” said Bayla. “It suits me and my lifestyle. It’s great.”

In addition to the ever-popular happy hours in the pub, there are countless trips, classes and activities nearly every day of the week, and even some opportunities to volunteer and give back to the community. 

Each day is different, and residents could find themselves attending an exercise class in the morning, heading out to lunch at a local restaurant, learning a new card game or making jewelry in the afternoon, and enjoying the sounds of Springwell’s Musician in Residence during a relaxing dinner. 

Because The Homestead is located close to arts and cultural venues, fine dining, shopping, and more, it’s also easy to find something to do “off-campus.”

“It’s in the perfect location. You feel like it’s country living, but it’s still in Baltimore,” said Bayla, who takes advantage of local restaurants and shops that are only a quick drive or shuttle trip away.

“Our Activities Director, Heather Entwistle, does a wonderful job of giving us a variety of opportunities to get involved,” said Mary Smith, another Homestead “pioneer.” “I think it’s very important for us to socialize and get to know our neighbors. I’m very happy here.”

Five-Star Food

Another opportunity for residents to socialize comes daily in the dining room. Chef Gerard Campbell, Chef Manager of The Homestead, has a unique fine dining background, which allows him to mix things up in the kitchen.  Gerard, a former executive chef at the award-winning Miss Shirley’s on Pratt Street and in Roland Park, is in charge of the upscale dining program for residents and also caters events in the private dining room for families. 

“It’s like going to a lovely restaurant every day, at least twice a day. Chef Gerard is amazing. He makes very creative meals, and there are lots of choices. And it’s neat too that they give you a menu, so you don’t have to eat the same thing all the time. I’m very happy with how the food is presented and what my choices are,” said Bayla. 

Lois Madow, another Homestead resident, really enjoys the dining experience, which also has an added bonus—more family time. “My kids keep coming here, and they love it. They say it’s better than a restaurant. So not only am I enjoying the food, but I’m also enjoying the camaraderie of my children,” she said.

Michael Romeres, who lives at The Homestead with his wife Jean, is impressed with the positive effects the dining has had on his health. “The chefs are fantastic. They have fish that comes in here that’s tagged—when it was caught and where it was caught in the Chesapeake Bay. Everything is so fresh,” he said. “My body has changed so much just because of the nutrition that it’s getting. That’s very important.”

Living a Worry-free Lifestyle

Knowing that everything is taken care of can also have tremendous health benefits. One convenient monthly fee at The Homestead includes meal plans, wellness checks, utilities, scheduled transportation, daily planned activities and more. There is no large entrance fee, allowing residents to control their nest egg and live a worry-free lifestyle. 

“I’ve only been here a month, and I feel like I’m 10 years younger. It means so much because I don’t have to think of much,” said Lois. “At the end of the month, my bills get paid, and I don’t have to worry about if I paid the BGE bill or anything. It’s just like a country club of fun.”

Sandy Marcin, whose mother Doris Rosenzweig is a resident, believes that The Homestead was the perfect choice for her mom, both economically and for her quality of life. 

“At some places, you have to pay a huge amount of money up front, and this is nice because you just pay as you go. This is manageable, and it’s reasonable for what they have to offer for sure,” said Sandy. “I’ve been telling a lot of my friends who are looking for a place for their parents. It’s like a country club here at The Homestead. It’s gorgeous and the staff is warm and welcoming. They can’t do enough for you.”

While many people are struck by the beauty of The Homestead or the affordable luxury of the lifestyle, it really all comes down to the residents and staff. “The people here are very friendly, and it makes for an atmosphere of coming home,” Bayla concluded. Joel added, “That’s quality of life. Being happy. Being content. Being where you want to be at this stage of the game.” 

Ultimately, it is the friendships and sense of community that makes The Homestead a true home. 

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