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  • Designing for more than just the residents of a community has become critical. With employee retention concerns in the industry, designers and architects must also consider staff, caregivers, families and the community at large while designing these communities.
  • Integrated technology is no longer a trend in senior living, but has instead become a standard industry-wide. This year will bring about a heavier focus on building scalable technology capabilities into community infrastructure.
  • The recent urban building boom has brought about an increased focus on integrating senior living communities into the community at large. Positioning senior living amenities, such as salons and dining areas, as public-facing spaces is becoming an important aspect of socialization and programming across care levels.
  • Design trends are shifting toward creating a sense of history and location within a space. Selecting accessories and materials with character will become more important than selecting lots of mass-produced items.
  • Consumer demand has led to more manufacturers embracing senior living requirements in products, materials and furnishings. This rise in availability and variety will bring about more aesthetically pleasing, functional products and furnishings for senior living.
  • Less-restrictive cooking technologies—hoodless cooking, sous-vide and induction ranges—will expand farm-to-table offerings and menu planning to the heightened care levels of skilled nursing and memory care.
  • Flexibility continues to dominate space planning of communities. Multi-use spaces are still on the rise, with communities opting to phase out traditional libraries in favor of reading rooms as part of coffee shops, bistros and cafés.
  • Technological advancements and the rising popularity of LEDs will bring about an increased use of adaptable LED lighting that aligns with residents’ circadian rhythms.
  • Creating luxe environments in senior living communities. A rise in popularity of jewel tones, mixed metals and lush, pre-treated fabrics will allow designers to create custom pieces that provide an opulent feel tailored to seniors.
  • Creating opportunities for purposeful engagement in programming and operations, rather than simply providing activities. Designers will need to consider the three zones of socialization to create spaces that promote integration for each resident’s choice of socialization.