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Senior Living: What to look for in a traditional Jewish retirement community

by Garden of Palms

When you’re searching for the perfect retirement community, there are so many factors to consider: finances, location, and amenities all come to mind. And while these are important, religion and spirituality play a key role for many seniors as well.

As a Jewish retirement community in Los Angeles, Garden of Palms recognizes the necessity of senior living communities that not only support, but celebrate, the Jewish way of life. If you’re looking for a traditional Jewish senior living community, here are some things to keep an eye out for.

Senior Living: What to look for in a traditional Jewish retirement community

A haimish atmosphere

One of the most essential parts of any senior living community is its atmosphere, and this is especially true for a Jewish retirement community. Stepping into a Jewish senior living community should feel like coming home, and the ideal environment evokes warmth and comfort by engaging all of the senses.

Consider how you feel when visiting each senior living community on your list; do you immediately feel welcome and cozy? You’ll want to view not only the common areas, but private resident spaces as well. Details can really make a difference when it comes to creating the right atmosphere. For example, apartments with kitchenettes may have separate hot and cold water faucet knobs, so that residents don’t accidentally use hot water on Shabbat.

Delicious kosher meals

Of course, any traditional Jewish retirement community would not be complete without delicious kosher meals. The kitchen is the heart of the home, after all, and the same can be said for retirement communities. If you keep kosher, you’ll want to ensure your senior living community of choice has a kosher kitchen. Ideally, a traditional Jewish senior community will have a menu filled with latkes, knish, cholent, shakshuka, and other staples.

A sense of community

A Jewish retirement community should emphasize the community aspect by offering plenty of opportunities to interact and bond with other residents. Stimulating and interesting activities are an essential part of an active and dynamic retirement experience, so evaluating a senior living community’s calendar is a must. Do they celebrate Jewish holidays, and engage with the greater Jewish community outside of the retirement home? For example, Garden of Palms regularly hosts students from neighboring Jewish schools.

Nurturing the whole person

Much as how the Jewish way of life nurtures all aspects of a person, a senior living community should support the spiritual, physical, emotional, and social needs of every resident. Spirituality can be supported through rituals and rabbinical guidance, and can also be integrated into some forms of exercise, such as yoga and tai chi.

Look for a variety of physical activities like bowling, nature walks, and swimming. Emotional needs can be nurtured through visits from students, animal companions, and family members, as well as wellness programs and storytelling. Finally, social supports include a variety of activities that unite and engage the community, like regular Judaic services, baking challah together, and weekly discussions.

Are you looking for a Jewish senior living community?

There are many qualities and nuances that go into creating a traditional Jewish senior living community, including a haimish atmosphere, kosher meals, a packed calendar, support of Jewish traditions, and a “whole person” approach to care. At Garden of Palms, we’ve combined all of these elements and more to result in a warm and inviting Jewish senior living community. We’re proud to offer a beautiful, supportive, and welcoming environment for you to live, laugh, and grow through the later stages of life.

To learn more about our kosher retirement community, click here to contact us today.