Friday, July 11, 2008

“Holiday” Brings Independent Retirement Living
to Southern Maine

By Joe Hessert
Staff Columnist
Retirement is supposed to be fun, relaxing and enjoyable – that’s the way Holiday Retirement has felt since 1971 and it’s a feeling that they plan to share with the communities of Southern Maine. Their new Kittery Estates complex, opening this fall at 220 State Road, will provide a lifestyle option where Holiday’s live-in staff does ‘all the work and [their tenants] do all the living.’
It’s an approach that has served them well and has impressed Greg Rydza who recently moved to Kittery with his wife, Susan. The Rydzas are one of three sets of managers who will live on site and be on-call to Kittery Estates’ residents 24 hours a day. “It’s a great company,” said Greg who managed Windham Falls in Groton, CT for Holiday before moving to Maine. “Any time there was an issue in Groton the head of the company asked me ‘What’s the right thing to do for the resident?’ and that’s what we did.”
North America’s largest provider of independent retirement living, Holiday has over 300 retirement communities across the United States and Canada and each one has guest rooms where vacationing members are welcome to stay free of charge. So retirees living in Kittery Estates have no-cost reservations at Bear Canyon Estates in New Mexico, Victoria Park in Alberta or Augustine Landing in Florida. Holiday also has two communities in Hawaii, which are popular destinations for residents at Holiday communities across the country.
And whether residents are vacationing at a Holiday location or coming home from a free bus trip to the Ogunquit Playhouse, they’ll have a warm gourmet meal cooked from scratch by one of Holiday’s world-class chefs waiting for them. In Kittery, Executive Chef Michael Rosenberg will be preparing three delicious meals for residents every day. And that’s just part of the appeal of Holiday living, said Rydza. There is a housekeeping service free to all residents in addition to the beauty salon, exercise room, free bus trips and more. “People will move into Kittery Estates,” Greg joked, “and never having to run to the store to buy toilet paper again. We take care of that too.”
Another reason that communities like Kittery Estates have become so popular is the community outreach opportunities that they provide to residents. Holiday’s Seniors Serving Seniors and Seniors Serving Society programs were named Most Innovative Programs of the Year in 2005 and 2007 by the International Council on Active Aging. That’s good news for the communities of southern Maine. Residents at Kittery Estates will have the opportunity to share their time and knowledge by helping school children learn to read, collecting food donations for local food banks, working with Habitat for Humanity and supporting Maine troops abroad.
Kittery Estates is the third Holiday Retirement facility to be built in Maine, following Sunbury Village in Bangor and The Woods at Canco in Portland. For more information about retirement at Kittery Estates contact managers Susan and Gregory Rydza at 207-438-9111, visit or stop by their business office at 99 State Road in Kittery.

Caption: An artist’s rendering of Kittery Estates. (Holiday Retirement photo)