You may grow older, but you don’t ever have to grow up. That seems to be the spirit embraced by some of the world’s greatest retirement communities, which show that you can be 55+ but still lead a healthy, active, vibrant, and fun lifestyle.
So, forget what you think you know about blue haired grannies hooked up to vibrating belt machines, let’s take a look at some communities that show how much fun you can have at any age: communities with amazing amenities like bike trails, walking paths, golf courses, tennis courts, and even the occasional equestrian facilities.
Sun City Lincoln Hills
When developer Del Webb opened the first “Sun City” in 1960’s Arizona, he revolutionized how the world viewed retirement communities. Since then, Sun City has continued to lead the field in innovations and amenities, and nowhere is this more apparent than at Sun City Lincoln Hills.
Located 30 miles from Sacramento, California, Sun City Lincoln Hills puts the Golden State’s perfect climate to great use. The area’s first homes opened in 1999, creating a community renowned for high end construction and thoughtful finishes.
But while the insides of the homes are nice, it’s what’s outside that’s even more exciting. Sun City Lincoln Hills features baseball fields, two 18-hole golf courses, and numerous fitness centers / activity rooms. And then there’s our favorite feature – over 19 hiking, walking, and biking trails woven throughout the community. Sounds like fun!
The Villages, Florida
If you want to go big, then you want to head to The Villages, in central Florida. This isn’t so much of a retirement community as it is an entire city, built from the ground up for active seniors.
With over 100,000 people calling the area home, you know you’ll never be missing a partner to hit the links or trails. Once you’ve found someone to accompany you on activities, the real question is – what to do first? With more than 50 recreation centers, 30+ golf courses, over 50 pools, and countless other options, you’ll never go a day without something fun to do outside.
Add in the fact that Florida has zero income tax, and that homes start at around $100,000, and you’ve got yourself a rather affordable option for an active retirement.
The Retreat at Carmel
While many retirees opt to head to warmer climes, there’s no reason that those looking to stay in the Northeast can’t find a great community as well. With that in mind, we think many seniors would love to live in The Retreat at Carmel, located in Carmel, New York. Sited only an hour outside of New York City, this community gives you an exciting mix of its own amenities, along with those of its surrounding town, and the metropolis nearby.
Within the community you have your own private walking trails, bocce courts, and tennis facilities. Right nearby you have access to not just golf courses but also a series of amazing parks, like Fahnestock State Park, which afford views of the beautiful Hudson Valley. Or hop on a train and enjoy all that NYC has to offer: world class shopping, Broadway musicals, amazing museums, and more!
The Village at Gleannloch Farms
Yee-haw! This community offers a very Texas appropriate twist: equestrian facilities. That’s right, not only does The Village at Gleannloch Farms feature your usual pools, rec centers, and golf, they also have an equestrian center, and countless trails to take your horse on. Given that this community is located just 25 miles from Houston, we wouldn’t expect anything less.
So, will you be galloping down a horse trail? Swimming in the outdoor, climate controlled pool? Heading into Houston for some shopping? Or maybe just taking your grandkids for a walk around the property on one of its many paths? At The Villages at Gleannloch Farms, you won’t have to choose, because you can do them all!
Jubilee at Hawks Prairie
If you’re looking to retire to somewhere beautiful, it’s hard to beat the Pacific Northwest. Featuring stellar views of Washington’s Mt. Rainier and the Puget Sound, Jubilee at Hawks Prairie is for those that fully embrace an active lifestyle. With a mix of new and preowned homes and resort style amenities, this community will ensure your golden years are the best you’ve ever lived.
One of the most amazing features of Jubilee is the private beach access, giving residents their very own patch of sand to dip their toes into the beautiful Puget Sound. That’s complemented by two 18 hole golf courses, two tennis courts, two pickleball courts, a basketball court, and of course a heated pool and spa. And since this region of the country is renowned for its bicycle access, Jubilee of course features a series of private trails, so you can take in all this beauty atop your favorite EVELO.
Next, let’s head back to one of those classic retirement states: Arizona! While the amenities have certainly changed since they first started building communities there in the 50s and 60s, other retirement advantages have stayed the same: low taxes, no humidity, and endless sunshine. PebbleCreek is located in the greater Phoenix area, and with over 6,200 homes over a wide variety of prices, you know you’ll be in good company.
Now, on to the amenities, which PebbleCreek has more than its fair share of. Since this is Arizona, there are of course two separate, highly regarded golf courses, with four tees each. Then, there are five tennis courts, eight pickleball courts, softball fields, four bocce ball courts, and an endless array of pools.
If all those outdoor activities have you tired, you can head to the Creative Arts Center, which features separate studios for woodwork, painting, sewing, quilting, and more. Throw in PebbleCreek’s Hiking Club – which takes amazing group trips to fantastic Arizona hiking locations like the Grand Canyon – and you have yourself one heck of a retirement community.
Midwesterner’s rejoice, you’ve got some great retirement community options as well. Carillon Club, in Naperville, IL, truly has something for everyone. For starters, you can’t beat the location; you’re just a 30 minute drive or train ride from Chicago, meaning you still have all of the Windy City’s famed amenities at your fingertips.
The community itself offers a wide variety of housing options: condos, townhomes, and single-family houses are available in 23 different floorplans. Once you’ve chosen your home, you’ll have endless things to do; while the onsite golf is limited to three holes, that’s more than made up for by the site’s many pools, multiple pickleball and tennis courts, gardening plots, and exercise studios. Then there’s our favorite amenity – the multiple, exclusive walking and biking trails that wind their way through the entire community.
The Landings on Skidaway Island
Georgia peaches will love The Landings on Skidaway Island, located in one of the South’s most scenic regions: the inter-coastal waterways of Savannah, GA. When you hear “island” you may think this community is out of reach to most, but while its top homes may be in the multi-million dollar range, there are still preowned houses available for under $200,000.
All that money comes with a lot of amenities: 6 championship golf courses, 3 tennis centers with a total of 34 courts, and countless pools and saunas. The Landings also features over 40 miles of hiking / biking trails, which link the island’s series of parks together. And, because they’re located on the Atlantic Ocean, The Landings also offers residents 2 deepwater marinas, for easy sailing access. Ships ahoy!
Hilltop at Inspiration
Ski buffs rejoice – we’ve got the perfect community for you! Hilltop at Inspiration is located in Aurora, CO and features everything you could imagine in the mile-high state: endless outdoor activities in any season, and fantastic access to both Denver and amazing ski resorts that are less than an hour away.
Once at Hilltop at Inspiration, you’ll have access to amazing amenities across the community’s 1,023 acres: clubhouses, pools, community centers, and tennis / pickleball / bocce ball courts. There are of course miles of multi-use trails, with more under construction. And because this is Colorado this community wouldn’t be complete without a rather unique amenity: an inline hockey rink!
Trilogy at The Polo Club
Those looking for an active retirement would be hard pressed to beat Trilogy at The Polo Club. Located in the Coachella Valley of California, this community has all of the Palm Springs region’s famed amenities within reach: over 125 golf courses, famed hiking next door at Mt. San Jacinto or nearby at Joshua Tree National Park, museums and art galleries, and year round festivals like the Stagecoach Country Music Festival, Southwest Arts Festival, Riverside County Fair & Date Festival, and many more.
If all those activities and the region’s endless sunshine don’t help keep you youthful and active, you’re in luck – Trilogy at The Polo Club has even more amenities right on site! The community’s 25,000 square foot club house features a top of the line demonstration kitchen, so you can hone your cooking skills, as well as billiards, yoga, and more. Outside, you have three pools, two patios, scenic ponds, and even outdoor exercise stations. Or join one of your new friends in the communities countless clubs – including our favorite group of all – bicycle club!
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