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It feels like we’re in a “holiday resort for seniors”

Written by Alan Wood
on June 09, 2020

Bruce and Lynn say seven years of living at Diana Isaac Retirement Village has delivered them a wonderful lifestyle and the ability to keep up with friends both in and outside the Mairehau village.

They say Ryman Healthcare has come to the fore to make their village, during the period of the COVID-19 crisis, better than they could have hoped for. They have a spacious townhouse, and say that keeping active and in touch with others is easy within the community.

Lynn says she has prepared a letter to thank management and staff for the extra work they undertook during alert Levels 4 and 3 during COVID-19, including special food parcels. “What they did for us all here was absolutely incredible. They were so generous with that huge grocery delivery.” They felt that Ryman had done a lot more for residents than other villages had.

The pair are born and bred Cantabrians and were brought up in Opawa and Fendalton respectively.They met at work while still youngsters and are the proud parents of a son and daughter as well as grandchildren. They plan to visit their daughter in the Nelson region as soon as they can, given that an Easter trip had to be cancelled due to COVID-19.

It is easy to see that Bruce and Lynn are an outgoing couple. They love to participate in village events and enjoy sports. Bruce became a Canterbury ‘rep’
in indoor bowls in the 1970s and now partakes in outdoor bowls on the village green
as well as golfing down at Everglades Country Golf Club off Marshlands Road.

Lynn enjoys both helping host line dancing classes at the village and taking part in a knit & natter group that is both creative and social. She has always loved to garden and loves to keep her hand in at Diana Isaac as well as going out for coffee with
old friends.

The village’s social facilities include atriums, a bar, a bowling green,
dining room, indoor bowls, a pool table and the village centre. Ryman Healthcare’s
response began in late January with restricted visits to villages for people who had travelled to affected areas overseas.

Ryman’s aim has been to keep the virus out, protect those residents in care who were most vulnerable to the virus, and create safe havens for our independent residents.

Staff helped rollout Zoom to more than 3,800 devices, so that residents and families have been able to make those important connections.

Residents have enjoyed keeping on the move with hallway exercise classes and activities like hallway bingo, as well as getting out for some fresh air. Diana Isaac’s social facilities include atriums, a bar, a bowling green, dining room, indoor bowls, a pool table and village centre.

During lockdown, there were also grocery packages and newsletter and puzzle
pages delivered to residents. I did the sudoku and the crosswords and Lynn did
the codecracker and all that sort of thing,” Bruce says. Staff have been
“absolutely fantastic”.

The pair look back to some of the wonderful things they’ve done including Lynn’s career as a shorthand typist and a homemaker and Bruce’s 50 years in the meat industry with companies including New Zealand Refrigerating Co Ltd and its subsequent owners.

It was their daughter, working for Ryman at the time, that recommended they move from their Avonhead home of nearly 40 years into the Mairehau village. “It was so nice coming into a brand new house again, it was fantastic,” Lynn says.

The pair’s other social activities and events include whiskey tastings, walking,
Triple A exercises, watching rugby and sports games with friends, and a movie watching group. “I don’t believe we’re in a retirement village, I believe we’re in a
holiday resort for seniors,” Bruce says. Neighbours are very supportive to each other, Lynn says.

Sales Advisors Adrienne Todd and Chris Ashton say now is a great time to come into the village to take a look at the stunning townhouses available. There are many aspects to retirement living and with the recent COVID-19 based events, residents had made plenty of comments on how well they’d been cared for.

About Ryman Healthcare:

Ryman was founded in 1984 and has become one of New Zealand’s largest listed companies. The company owns and operates 45 retirement villages in New Zealand and Australia which are home to more than 13,900 residents and the company employs 6,800 team members.

Media advisory: For further information, photos, interviews or comment please contact Group Corporate Affairs Manager Silke Marsh on +64 27 294 3609 or Communications Advisor Maryvonne Gray on 027 552 0767.

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