Peace of mind is part of the package
Anyone who thinks retirement is the end of the road for living a full life should think again, writes Michelle Swart as she finds out about an attractive retirement option in Muizenberg, Western Cape
FOUR landmark Sir Herbert Baker homes at the St Leger Retirement Hotel in Muizenberg have been cleverly conjoined to create a wonderful space that encompasses not only luxurious, gracious and comfortable living but also adds great service and care, views, art and culture — all under a series of architecturally important roofs set against a backdrop of beautiful scenery.
Built at the turn of the century, the first of the four houses, Sandhills, was designed as Sir Herbert Baker’s personal beach house. Among the other buildings, one was bought by Albert Victor Lindbergh, the founder of CNA and the Sunday Times. Lindbergh married Gladys St Leger, the granddaughter of the “Old Saint”, the founder of the Cape Times, Frederick York St Leger.
The Joan St Leger Lindbergh Arts Foundation was created by their daughter, Joan Lindbergh, whose dream was have a centre of musical and artistic excellence. In 1995, Joan bought Sandhills and consolidated the block of Baker houses into an architectural unity; the renovation of these buildings into the St Leger Retirement Hotel makes her vision of creating a striking façade to grace the beachfront a reality.
This is why the St Leger will particularly please people who enjoy the arts. The Joan St Leger Lindbergh Arts Foundation is a charitable trust committed to the development and promotion of artistic and cultural activities. As a tenant at the hotel, the foundation stages art exhibitions and hosts music concerts within the hotel and acts as a tribute to the inspiration and philanthropy of Joan St Leger Lindbergh.
The 25 apartments that make up this offering are offered on a “life right” basis and provide residents with 24-hour security and emergency buttons in bathrooms and bedrooms which connect to the 24-hour duty manager/nurses’ station. Inroom nursing care ranges from short-term daily help to full 24-hour care and frail care. The hotel is wheelchair accessible and residents can move easily and freely from one end of the St Leger to the other without going outside.
First opened in 2009, the St Leger is now in its third and final phase of development, scheduled for completion by the end of the year, when a total of seven more apartments will become available, ranging in price from R690 000 to R1,95m.
Units are finished to a high standard with attention to detail in respect of surfaces, hardware and overall aesthetics. The charm and appeal of the St Leger for residents is that they furnish their own units; each apartment or unit is a blank canvas, giving residents the chance to personalise their space to their own individual taste and needs.
Any apartments purchased now for the third phase can be designed to your own requirements. Fully serviced apartments include a custombuilt kitchenette and en-suite bathroom with emergency call buttons. Units range from 18m2 to 70m2 and many have panoramic views of False Bay and the mountains.
Residents effectively have their own home — instead of having to go to a home for the elderly. They also have 24-hour care, if needed, which is administered in the residents’ own apartments or in a private frail care section (to be completed in the third phase of development).
Four relaxing sittings rooms, a card room, a library (which includes an extremely rare and valuable “living library”), a conservatory (third phase) and a dining room, which serves excellent cuisine, along with sunny and protected seating areas both inside and outside make this a unique proposition for discerning people who want to retire in style.
The trustees explain: “We think it’s imperative that residents feel at home and feel respected and cared for. Our aim is to provide the right surroundings, the right care and the right framework so that their retirement is a joy and not a burden.
“What we’ve also found is people reaching retirement are invariably worried about levies and the cost of living but we’ve considered this carefully. We believe it’s important to offer, above all, peace of mind.”
In this respect, the St Leger Trust has developed a sophisticated and sound financial model which allows residents to be cushioned from the impact of inflation as the cost of living rises. While the levy is not-forprofit and completely transparent, the levy stabilisation fund ensures escalating living costs can be met by the residents. Contact: St Ledger Retirement Hotel Dealtry Pickford 083 440 2122 Office 021 709 6200