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Retirement Tips

Luxury Retirement Communities: What to Expect, What You’ll Pay

You worked hard. You’re ready to retire in style. Fortunately, luxury retirement communities are waiting for you. Expect chef-prepared cuisine, high-end appliances, relaxing spas, and fellow retirees living care-free and active lifestyles.

Indoor swimming pool, to illustrate article on luxury retirement communities

Swimming pools are usually a feature of luxury retirement communities.

Of course, as the adage goes, “You get what you pay for.” Resort-style retirement living comes with a price. So, if you’re looking for a luxury retirement community, consider the amenities, features and services included in the cost. Those are what make high-end communities stand out.

What Are Luxury Retirement Communities?

As noted, these communities may not be in everyone’s price range. But, by some estimates, up to 12 percent of the senior population can afford to live in a luxury retirement community. Expect your neighbors to include former doctors, lawyers and executives. Many of these people may be empty-nesters who can tap their home equity to afford the higher costs.

Luxury retirement communities come in lots of shapes and sizes. They can be age-restricted (55+ or 62+). They might include single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums, apartments, and more.

Luxury communities also can include a range of senior-housing options: active-adult apartments, independent living, assisted living and memory care. Many luxury senior complexes are continuing care retirement communities. These provide tiers of service as needed, from independent living to skilled nursing. This allows you to move into a community and stay there if you need care as you age.

Features of Luxury Retirement Communities

senior man and woman doing push-ups in gym

Expert well-equipped fitness centers in luxury retirement communities.

Luxury retirement communities offer the feel of living in a resort. Every day will be a vacation day. While each community has its unique features, amenities and services, high-end retirement communities often include:

  • Elegant restaurants and casual cafes for anytime dining
  • Gourmet kitchens
  • Salons and spas
  • State-of-the-art fitness centers
  • Theaters for movies and events
  • Art studios
  • Libraries
  • Swimming pools
  • 24-hour concierges
  • Housekeeping
  • Grocery shopping and delivery
  • Dog walking and pet care
  • Transportation services

Larger communities might include tennis courts, golf courses, and walking trails.

(Note: Some services might carry an additional charge.)

Cost of Living in a Luxury Retirement Community

Gourmet kitchen, to illustrate article on luxury retirement communities

Luxury retirement communities usually will feature gourmet kitchens.

The cost of living in a luxury retirement community is based on several factors, including location and amenities. For luxury apartments and independent living communities, rents might start in the range of $1,000 to $2,000 a month and go up to $5,000, depending on where you live and the size of your living space.

The pricing model for continuing care retirement communities, or CCRCs, generally is different. In these communities, you pay an entrance fee. Entrance fees vary but can be in the low- to mid-six figures. The average entrance fee is about $250,000, according to one survey. Then residents pay a monthly fee, which can be in the range of $2,000 to $4,000.  

Of course, when you’re looking for luxury, those prices go up. in 2014 reported on a Palo Alto, California, continuing care retirement community with a starting entrance fee of $1.1 million, and a monthly fee starting at $5,100, for a one-bedroom unit with a den.

However, some portion of the entrance fee for continuing care retirement communities may be refunded to you if you move out or to your estate when you die. Refunds of 50 percent and 90 percent are common. 

So, if you can afford it, kick back and relax in luxury in your retirement. You’ve earned it.

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  • Mary Beth Adomaitis

    About :

    Mary Beth Adomaitis a freelance writer living in Southern California. She has written about senior topics for several senior living websites. She also has a blog, Unwrinkled Hearts, which was started after her mother-in-law passed away in 2015. It focuses on elderly living in the 21st century. Mary Beth has been a writer/journalist for more than 25 years, lending her talents to companies such as The Los Angeles Times, where she also served as a copy editor and graphic designer.


    1. Hi,
      I am wondering what is “State-of-the-art fitness centers”?

    2. Susan Walsh says:

      Looking for one in Nevada. Reasonably priced.

    3. vladimir kolesnik says:


    4. sheila love says:

      I’m looking for a complex in the Charlotte and Raleigh area based on income. I will be on a fix income and will not be able to pay 1000 to 5000 a month. I would love to live in a place that’s nice and safe. So are there any places in those locations that might meet my needs

    5. Judy Red says:

      Where are these luxury communities?

    6. ELSA RIVERA says:

      I am looking for something nice but affordable. I am by myself and would enjoy a nice quiet area. Maybe up to $800 a month. Its too expensive to live here in South Florida. I am willing to move to Boca Raton or West Palm but no further. I might consider Orlando too. Like I said I’m alone so can’t go too high in price. If anyone knows of a 55 or older place in that price range, please let me know. I’ve been looking and so far that price is only found in Orlando. Thank You, Elsa

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