Element hires new general manager for its intergenerational aging-in-place vision at its flagship residence.
VANCOUVER, B.C. OPAL by Element Lifestyle Retirement Inc. (TSX-V:ELM) has entered its home stretch as the innovative retirement residence has 93 percent of its condominiums sold and 98 percent of rental suites reserved, with waitlists growing on already sold and reserved suites. Completion of construction is expected in the first quarter of 2019 – on the earlier end of the original schedule.
Element reports that while the average age of individuals living in retirement communities in B.C. is normally in the mid to high 80s, there are encouraging statistics on their age-friendly model: 20 per cent of their residents will be under age 65; 30 per cent expect multiple generations participating in OPAL’s diverse array of activities more than three times a week, 20 per cent at least twice a week, and more than 90 per cent of them will have family visiting ‘regularly and frequently’.
Photo Caption: Opal by Element
Photo supplied: Element Lifestyle Retirement
“The varied age group reflects Element’s vision for OPAL as an intergenerational community through its flexible, innovative management services,” says Candy Ho, director, and vice-president of Element. “This is the kind of resident mix we were hoping for and we’re very excited that we are achieving exactly what the residence is designed for. Family won’t only be here for a meal or two. They will be fully integrated into the OPAL community’s vibrant recreational program.”
Element is also pleased to announce that Edwin Brunink has joined its flagship residence as general manager. Brunink holds a BBA degree in business administration and hotel management from Stenden University in the Netherlands. He brings more than 20 years of multi-unit business management experience, with a focus in hospitality and culinary services within the industries of cruise lines and retirement living. He is an accomplished leader and has a strong track record of success in developing and implementing a variety of strategic initiatives.
Brunink has held numerous senior management positions, including global culinary operations manager, food and beverage manager and hotel director with Holland America Line; global general manager with Oceania Cruises; national director of culinary services with Revera Inc; director of operations with Jarlette Health Services’ Retirement Division; and general manager with Compass Group Canada. He prides himself in consistently fostering a culture that the team can be proud of and exceeding resident, guest and company expectations.
“We consider Mr. Brunink’s role to be critically important,” Ho says. “He will be responsible for executing our revolutionary intergenerational vision, making the first project that is age-friendly come alive, turning vision into reality.”
OPAL is the first retirement community in B.C. that offers personal support and care within a variety of age groups. The $105.7 million residence, which held its topping off ceremony in May, is located on Vancouver’s West Side in the heart of the premier King Edward neighbourhood.
It offers a wide range of amenities and services to allow seniors to age in place, couples to stay together and families to enjoy quality time together regularly and frequently. Part of Element’s philosophy is ensuring a community where members of all generations can visit and interact.
The 142,000-square-foot concrete-build residence has 130 homes in a variety of configurations, from studios to three-bedroom rentals and condominiums, as well as complex care units. OPAL will have 44 condominiums and 56 rentals as independent living, all physically designed and staffed to provide for assisted living so residents can stay in the same suite as long as possible.
In a dedicated and secured area with its own dining, activities and around 2500 square feet of an outdoor patio, there are 30 units of 24-hour registered nursing, licensed complex-care suites (one double occupancy for spouses or siblings).
OPAL will also feature more than 30,000 square feet of amenities for indoor and outdoor programs and activities, including Yoga, art classes, wellness seminars, hobby groups, a herb garden and cooking classes.
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About Element Lifestyle Retirement Inc. (TSX.V:ELM)
Headquartered in Vancouver, Element specializes in developing and operating active lifestyle retirement communities. Led by Don Ho, a visionary pioneer in the industry, its executive team has 50 years of collective experience in running and cultivating leadership for residences across North America. Element offers tailored consulting services in management, development and operations to established senior residences for short- and long-term contracts. It is actively involved in projects in BC and Ontario and recently established a wholly-owned subsidiary in Hong Kong.