Everyone has different needs later in life, be it assisted living, memory care, or maintaining independent living. Some retirement communities specialize in providing any or all of the above in lavish settings with spectacular amenities — and they aren't all in Florida. Here are 21 of the most luxurious retirement communities around the United States.
arizona: rio verde community and country club
Almost 1,000 townhomes and villas range from as little as $200,000 to as much as $1 million at this high-end, 55-plus community. Residence at the Rio Verde includes membership to the golf club.
rio verde: actively retired
An active lifestyle is the main appeal of Rio Verde. The Rio Verde courses are undergoing a renovation valued at $6 million, and that includes the clubhouse. Some upgrades include raising the clubhouse ceiling, additional sculptures and landscaping, and new tile and countertops. Private dining will be an option, and guests can enjoy a wine room and lounge area, too.
arizona: the preserve, tucson
Nestled in a valley of the Catalina Mountains, The Preserve has standalone homes that range in price from $474,900 to over $1,000,000. Each home has a stunning view of the mountains with upscale details including stone fronts and pebbled garden walkways that blend into the exterior landscape.
the preserve: in the swim
No need to downsize when you retire. Homes at the The Preserve are designed for more space. Entertainers kitchens, spacious living rooms, and master suites provide plenty of space to host parties. In addition to two golf courses and a large outdoor pool, The Preserve has plenty of classes, activities, shows, and clubs. There's always nearby Tucson for shopping, dining or entertainment, too.
arizona: trilogy at encanterra
With homes starting at $224,000 and with some offering a quick move-in option for up to $536,000, all houses have garages for two or three cars. Want to build to your own specifications? Shea3D YourPlans lets future homeowners choose where to place the kitchen, dining room, and entertainment room before they move in.
trilogy at encanterra: in the club
Want exclusive membership to a deluxe clubhouse? Encanterra's clubhouse La Casa was named Best Clubhouse in the Country for 2018 by 55Places.com. The 60,000 square foot space overlooks the golf course and has a fitness center, swimming pools (plural), spa, tennis courts, gourmet dining at The Bistro 1528 (with private wine tastings at The Vault) or three other dining options, and entertainment and social spaces. At the smaller clubhouse The Algarve, you can try your hand at pottery or take in some shade under the Portico walkway.
california: the samarkand, santa barbara
Want to retire by the beach? The Samarkand in Santa Barbara is on the Pacific Ocean. The Santa Ynez Mountains are on the other side of the community for the best of both worlds. Get beach light through your windows, walk-in closets, and your choice of finishes. Outside the individual rooms, the magnolia tree and garden fountains can be enjoyed by the whole Samarkand community.
the samarkand: freedom of choice
The newest addition to the Samarkand is the LifeCenter, a two-story, 10,000 square foot spa. The Life Center also includes the Mountain View Cafe, office space, and a TV studio. At the Samarkand you can also choose between fine and casual dining with indoor or outdoor seating overlooking the mountains.
california: the village, sherman oaks
Less than an hour from downtown Los Angeles, The Village offers independent and assisted living in a resort atmosphere. All apartments contain all-electric kitchens as well as appliances, including microwaves. Some have patios and balconies, and all but the studios have walk-in closets. Dine in the restaurant for made-to-order meals served on fine china.
the village, sherman oaks: activity zone
Though the apartments at The Village are on the cozy side, the activities directors more than make up for it in luxurious lifestyle. Residents can enjoy quiet time in the fully-stocked library, keep in touch with family in the internet cafe, or stay active in the fitness center. The screening room offers movies daily, and some are available to screen in-room, too.
colorado: ritz-carlton residences vail
This Colorado retirement community lives up to the Ritz-Carlton reputation for luxury with ski slope-adjacent apartments ranging from two-bedrooms to a six-bedroom penthouse. Located in the mountains, these residences have year-round pools, hot tubs, and ski access. There's one listing for $1.6 million, but most sell for close to $4 million.
ritz-carlton residences vail: mountain high
Whether in a penthouse or apartment, residents enjoy hickory hardwood floors and vaulted ceilings. Kitchens have granite counters, marble bathrooms and heated floors. Worried about retiring on a mountain? The residence has daily shuttle service from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. and many fitness services on-site. When the grandchildren visit, they won't be bored, either — there's a Teen room that includes a Wii play console and table games.
connecticut: riverwalk branford
The ranch-style and two-story homes at Riverwalk Branford have hardwood floors, nine foot ceilings, two-car garages, and basements. Backyards are part of a 60-acre marshland forest, and the Branford River can be your backyard. Don't worry about yardwork, because landscaping and snow plowing are included.
riverwalk branford: lake living
In addition to a garden alcove in the Northeast, Riverwalk gives seniors everything they need for active living. With nearby marinas, residents don't have to give up boating, fishing, or water sports. The community is also close to town for shopping, movies, art and museums, and even excursions to the local casinos.
florida: solivita in kissimmee
Only 21 miles from Disney World, Solvita has plenty of natural beauty to explore — there are 4,300 acres of greenland and lakes, including two full 18-hole golf courses. The 17,000 square foot ballroom is perfect for special events. Choose between attached or detached single family homes.
solivita in kissimmee: get busy
Solvita has hundreds of weekly activities and 70 clubs for residents to join. There are two fitness centers, indoor and outdoor pools for classes or free swimming, plus tennis and ball courts (even a softball field) open day and night (with lighting).
These $4 million to $11 million mansions have up to 15,000 acres each — and up to seven bedrooms. In individual homes you may find tile or hardwood floors, stone fireplaces, wine cellars, or private waterfalls, plus European designs inspired by no less than Michelangelo. The community is 10 minutes from Disney World, but residents may not care to leave this community located near the Butler Chain of Lakes.
isleworth: art appeal
If the neighborhood doesn't convince you that Isleworth is deluxe luxury, the community's sculpture collection should — works by Salvador Dali, Henry Moore, and Philip Jackson line the streets and the Arnold Palmer-designed golf course.
florida: the villages, sumter county
The villas at The Villages are individual homes that can include brick driveways, granite counters, two-car garages, and flooring that ranges from tile to concrete (but never carpet). A $159 monthly amenity fee grants access to golf, swimming, tennis and ball courts, pools, fishing, fitness trails, and over 2,000 activities a week. Interested? A test run costs from $99 to $199 a night.
the villages, sumter county: show time
The property has a 99-seat theater that hosts shows like Chicago as well as performances by residents. There's a dog park, a dance studio, and an archery range, too. The five villages share three town squares just a short golf cart drive apart for shopping and dining, and Fenney Village has a wood-railed walking path through its garden.
florida: on top of the world, ocala
With cottages from $160,000 to estates in the $300,000 range, On Top of the World offers five different house designs from cottages to estates, with tile or hardwood floors, brick driveways and garden paths, granite counters, and covered porches. This gated community with three guarded entrances has three golf courses, three fitness centers, tennis and pickleball courts, indoor and outdoor pools, a radio-controlled airplane-flying field, three dog parks, and 17 miles of walking trails.
on top of the world, ocala: let the sun shine
The Carriage series homes are equipped with solar power, and all homes are constructed for water and energy efficiency. The homes also have expansive entertaining, kitchen and dining rooms. Circle Square Commons gives the community a small town square for dances, a weekly farmer's market, and more activities.
florida: sarasota bay club
There are three options for owning a condo in the Sarasota Bay Club, including one that refunds 90 percent of the money paid for your condo, less fees, to your estate when vacated and resold. The median list price is $652,000 but can go as high as $1.4 million depending on the size and location. Monthly service fees vary from $2,574 to $7,281 depending on how many bedrooms and residents live in each condo, but services like maids, meals, and transportation are a la carte.
sarasota bay club: top perks
Residents can enjoy all the high-end amenities of luxury retirement at the Sarasota Bay Club. The pool is heated, and residents can choose between casual and formal dining with all dishes made-to-order, including appetizers, soups, and salads. The casual Veranda simulates outdoor dining in the comfort of air conditioning. More standout amenities include a full bar, theater, fitness center, massage therapy studio, game rooms, woodworking shop, art studio, library and beauty salon on the premises.
hawaii: regency at hualalai
Regency at Hualalai has independent and assisted living apartments from $200,000 to $500,000. Studios are 312 square feet, one-bedrooms are 765 square feet, and two-bedrooms are 790 square feet.
regency at hualalai: just beachy
Being in Hawaii is surely the biggest amenity offered at this retirement village, and Regency's Hualalai location is a few blocks from the beaches and resorts. There is also an outdoor pool and a host of activities and road trips for residents, including music and pet therapies and religious services. Fine dining offers several meal options, and coffee and tea are available 24 hours a day. Regency's Puakea location isn't too shabby either.
massachusetts: residence at turner hill, ipswich
The homes at the Residence at Turner Hill, Ipswitch, are in the $1 million range for a 2,500 square foot three-bed and two-bath house. Out of your price range? Join the golf club and get a taste of the good life on 18-holes or in the clubhouse. The indoor practice facility allows putting and hitting in comfortable air conditioning, and there's more outdoor practice space with bent greens and bunkers.
residence at turner hill, ipswich: white hot
Private homes are modeled after the Turner Hill Estate (which is available for weddings and special events). Rohl and LG appliances are upscale kitchen additions, beautifully complemented by granite countertops and hardwood floors.
nevada: sun city summerlin
Just off the Vegas strip, the quiet community of Sun City Summerlin has golf courses, trees, and lakes. A volunteer security service keeps residents safe. It's possible to find a Summerlin house for the mid-$200,000s, but it's more likely to cost three to five times as much.
sun city summerlin: beyond golf
Life in Sun City Summerlin is more than just golf, although three courses will keep golfers busy. Dine in one of two restaurants overlooking the lake and golf greens, and take note — a third is coming soon. The more elegant Summit boasts Art Deco lighting and cherry wood. Enjoy the 312-seat theater for live shows, as well as a library and fitness center, pools, ball courts, massage rooms, and some convenient casinos. After all, it is still Las Vegas.
new jersey: the chelsea, east brunswick
Assisted living doesn't get much better than The Chelsea. Claim an apartment in this sprawling estate for $5,000 to $6,600 a month. Residents can sit by one of two fireplaces or get in on some board or card game action. Chefs in the dining room will personalize orders for each guest.
the chelsea, east brunswick: healthy living
If ongoing healthcare is a necessity, it would be hard to find a more luxurious setting to go about treatment. The 24-hour nursing service handles medical and memory care. The Crossings is a program designed to help residents with the transition to assisted living and provide ongoing therapy in a comfortable, private setting.
ohio: first community village
A comprehensive luxury facility for seniors in Ohio, First Community Village offers independent and assisted living, with apartments featuring one or two bedrooms. Rent ranges from $4,600 to $11,285 a month, depending on healthcare needs, and First Community offers a Premier Plan to help with higher-end costs.
first community village: big city living
Located in the heart of Columbus, residents are still close to the big city, but First Community Village lets residents enjoy staying close to home with activities in the fitness center and indoor pool, classes and clubs, performance events, and social activities. If you live in a manor, having your own state-of-the-art kitchen may be enough, but two dining options both feature made-to-order dishes tailored to you by the chef.
south carolina: sun city hilton head
A popular vacation spot for golfers, Sun City Hilton Head houses 14,000 seniors in its over-5,000 acre property. Those committed to active lifestyles can explore the three golf courses on-site. Argent Lakes is the executive level course. Hidden Cypress offers difficult terrain in deceptively scenic holes, and a nearby steakhouse with three cuts of beef and veal. Okatie has five tees for more casual play.
sun city hilton head: play ball
Most retirement homes have courts for tennis, but Sun City has a softball field plus space for volleyball, basketball, and a dog park. Live performances, drive-in movies for golf carts, and lawn picnicking are also favorite pastimes.
texas: the forum at park lane
At The Forum residents don't have to retire without their pets, as even large dogs are welcome to live in The Forum's pet-friendly apartments. Celebrity chef Brad Miller is in charge of dining, which can include rack of lamb and shellfish or vegetarian options. On-site health care includes nursing and rehab, and the community is close to major hospitals.
the forum at park lane: quiet time
The Forum boasts a quiet street within an oak tree perimeter. Residents don't have to leave the grounds to do laundry or visit a hair salon or library. The Forum is also close to malls, a museum, movie theaters, and churches. Apartments feature hardwood or tile floor with stainless steel appliances and granite countertops.
utah: cedarwood at sandy
Apartments dedicated to independent or assisted living at Cedarwood allow residents to sit under the outdoor gazebo or walk around the landscaped courtyard. Green thumbs can even tend their own gardens. The six-acre estate in a valley under the Wasatch Mountains has plenty of outdoor space for socializing.
cedarwood at sandy: worth a gamble
There's a reason Cedarwood, which has recently renovated, has won Best of State four times and is endorsed by the Utah Assisted Living Association. With plenty of active and engaging activities on site, Cedarwood also provides transport to nearby Salt Lake City and the local casinos.
washington: covenant shores
One- and two-bedroom apartments are available for retired couples or singles in this community just outside of Seattle. From independent living to assisted living, skilled nursing, and rehab, Covenant Shores offers comprehensive medical care in addition to luxurious living. In 2019, look for a name change to Covenant Living.
covenant shores: stay afloat
It's possible to keep a boat in the marina in this community, and water activities include kayaking and canoeing. Residents can also enjoy events at Fortuna Lodge, or visit the art gallery and take art classes. Off-site excursions let residents stay connected to Seattle's urban culture as well.