NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

July 22, 2010

Rowley nursing home to double in size

By Michelle Pelletier Marshall
correspondent

ROWLEY — A multi-phased, multi-building expansion of the Sea View Retreat, a nursing home that is nestled on 200 acres in the woods behind Rowley's downtown area, will more than double the size of the facility and usher in several new service offerings.

"We are a single property establishment," said Sea View Retreat's owner and administrator Stephen Comley. "To keep competitive with nursing home chains that are the majority in the industry, we needed to upgrade our offerings to include outpatient care, independent living opportunities, as well as re-energize our current continuum of care services, which is what this expansion project will do."

Built in 1954, Sea View Retreat provides care for chronically ill and frail elders and also offers sub-acute care for patients recovering from an illness or serious accident.

A third generation family-owned business, the center stresses compassionate care and boasts better-than-industry patient-to-nurse ratios, and was recently named one of the state's top nursing homes based on a recent Nursing Home Satisfaction Survey.

The expansion includes five projects:

A 12-bed addition to Sea View's current 62-bed residential nursing center will include doubling the size of its rehabilitation gym and installing a new pool. This project is slated to begin in 2011, with completion in 2012.

A two-story conservatory, scheduled to open in approximately four months, will be used as an extension of the center's dining services, as well as provide a place for residents to sit and enjoy the gardens contained within. This conservatory also will be available as a public meeting location.

The new facility will have 45 one-bedroom apartments, 10 of which will be designated as an Alzheimer's/dementia care wing. Residents here will have access to the medical and other care services of the residential nursing center. The ground-breaking will be in 2011 for this facility, with completion expected in 2012.

A converted gatehouse with five one-bedroom apartments, which are currently open with three of them occupied. These upper-end units are often used by loved ones of those who live in the residential nursing center, but who do not need such intensive care. They also are rented to executives from companies who are traveling in this area or being relocated to this area. Those who live in these independent living quarters have access to the services provided at the main center should they require them.

The final phase of the expansion includes a new 20-unit facility; the construction time line is still being determined.