Out Of The Woods, Into Trillium Woods

Trillium Woods senior living community prepares for its grand opening next month.
Renderings of the soon-to-open Trillium Woods: (clockwise from top left: outside, lobby, pool and dining room).

After much anticipation, a new senior living community will soon open in Plymouth. Trillium Woods (TW) is a continued care retirement community with 195 apartments and 14 duplex-style homes, spanning three levels of care: independent, assisted and skilled living. Set to open in July, more than 64 percent of TW’s available units are already reserved. The 46-acre, sustainably-designed construction is the first of its kind in Plymouth. Victoria Duvall, executive director, explains the enthusiasm for the project: “It’s an opportunity for residents to get together in a brand new community and develop their own culture.”

At the heart of Trillium Woods’ allure is Life Care Services, a contract program that Duvall describes as “a health and financial security package.” After a one-time entrance payment, residents pay a monthly fee that remains fixed throughout their days at TW, regardless of any changes in their need for care. “It’s the reason people end up moving to a community like this,” Duvall says, although she goes on to name a long list of other reasons, including the Community Life Services Department, offering a variety of group activities built around resident interest surveys; a dining room with flexible meal times, plus round-the-clock access to more casual dining; a fitness center and a luxurious resident clubhouse. “It really has that one-stop shop, community resort-style feel,” Duvall says.

Also on campus is The Birches, a three-story, Medicare- and Medicaid-eligible transitional care unit, offering long-term stays and short-term rehabilitation to residents of TW and the greater Plymouth area. Each of the private suites comes with a bathroom and shower. The unit boasts a “neighborhood layout,” with a beauty salon, spa, dining room, porch and kitchen, where staff prepare meals, but “it feels just like eating at home,” says Elizabeth Fetner, health center administrator.

The therapy gym is equipped with the latest in rehabilitation technology, and an outdoor walking circuit (with segments specially designed to mimic topical irregularities and sharp pitches) which prepares patients for the obstacles they may encounter when they resume independent living. As falls are one of the most common health challenges faced by seniors, TW’s therapists help residents identify potential slipping hazards and offer solutions.

According to Andrea Barrett, TW’s human resources director, the new construction “has made a big impact in the community and sparked a lot of interest. People [were] calling us up before we had even posted any jobs.” TW will open with 50 full-time employees, and Barrett anticipates hiring several more by the end of the year. The bulk of these positions will be in food service and housekeeping, followed by skilled nurses and nursing aides. “We’re looking for creative, caring individuals, who are open to a new style of health care for [older adults],” Barrett says.

TW is open to ages 62 and up, and Barrett says that the ideal TW residents are “people who are still active, who can enjoy all the wonderful amenities we have to offer.” Audrey and Brad Johnson of Plymouth are a prime example. The active septuagenarians will be among the Woods’ first settlers. “We decided [it was] time for us to make our own decision about what we’re going to do,” says Audrey. “[Some] people are not ready to make the move and pretty soon… they’re not able to do so. We [are] being proactive.” TW was the first and last option they considered. “We signed up right away,” Johnson says. A fan of water aerobics and reading, she is excited to have easy access to a pool and library. Their Imperial model apartment includes two bedrooms, a media room and enough space for her dining room table, hutch and, most importantly, visits from the whole family.

Most appealing is the promise of worry-free living, Johnson says. “Not having to change a light bulb… having meals available ... [And the] sense of security you get, knowing [that] somebody’s always available, if you need help.” Thanks to the monthly get-togethers TW has organized over the past few months, the Johnsons have already made many friends whom they are eager to call their neighbors.