Eden Heights of Olean, a retirement, assisted living, and memory care community in Olean, New York, has seen significant change during its three decades in operation.
Still, the last two years have been one for the books. Like most health care facilities, Eden Heights faced significant challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic for most of 2020 and parts of 2021. Yet, the efforts of the entire staff and a change in leadership propelled the community to new heights in 2022.
The 107-bed community is in the beautiful Southern Tier of Upstate New York, in the Enchanted Mountains, near Allegany State Park.
Olean has about 15,000 residents and is about 70 miles south of Buffalo. It is approximately 95 miles east of Erie, Pennsylvania, and about a three-hour drive from Cleveland, Ohio. The community is only a few blocks from the city’s core, with shopping, dining, arts, entertainment, and public parks.
Eden Heights has welcomed residents for more than 30 years and is deeply rooted in the community.
New Faces Greet Future Residents
Like many assisted living and memory care communities, Eden Heights of Olean saw its share of ups and downs during the COVID-19 pandemic. Coming out of the pandemic, the new team leader took the opportunity to revitalize several activities and outings to be 100 percent safe for residents. Group activities have since resumed, much to the residents’ delight.
Kristina Luzzi was installed as Director of Admissions in October 2021. She previously served as the Marketing & Sales Director at the community. Luzzi serves as the main point of contact for incoming residents and their families.
Luzzi has more than 25 years of experience in business, sales, and marketing. She’s available to answer questions, schedule appointments, and assist with community tours and move-ins.
The staff at Eden Heights also includes:
- Kelly Bearfield is the Director of Memory Care in the community. She is a registered nurse with more than two decades of experience. She previously served as Wellness Director at Eden Heights of Eden before joining the team in Olean.
- Barbara Gordon joined Eden Heights of Olean in early 2022 as Activities Director. She has over 16 years of experience in activities for seniors.
Luzzi said a new round of improvements began in March at Eden Heights. The first phase includes a total remodel of the main office area and the adjacent hallway. The makeover started with stripping the site to the studs and installing new drywall, new flooring, and a new entryway.
“It’s a new look and feel,” Luzzi said.
The initial changes are slated to be completed by September 2022. Staff and residents plan to celebrate the improvements with a ribbon-cutting ceremony and ice cream social at a date to be determined.
Residents Enjoy Daily Living
Life at Eden Heights comes with all the comforts of home and quite a few unexpected perks.
All residents enjoy three nutritious chef-prepared meals daily, along with appropriate snacks. Residents can enjoy restaurant-style meals in the communal main dining room. A more intimate dining area is provided for those residents who require a quieter setting and individualized attention.
In their apartments, residents receive 24-hour supervision and personal care, including medication assistance and help with hygiene. There is an in-house beauty salon and barber shop so residents can relax while getting their hair done. There are even massage and pet therapy services for anyone needing their spirit lifted.
All rooms have cable TV hookups and receive housekeeping and laundry services. Daily, weekly, and monthly events and activities are coordinated by an in-house Activities Director. Outside the facility are a scenic courtyard and porch areas for relaxing, visiting, and enjoying the view.
Countless Activities to Stay Busy
Eden Heights residents are regularly stimulated with a full schedule of social, recreational, and spiritual activities, from concerts, holiday parties, and celebrations to trips to local restaurants.
In her role as Activities Director, Gordon keeps the slate full of fun and fulfilling activities and outings that the residents love.
Here are a few favorite activities that routinely pop up on the community schedule:
- Games: Bingo, Dice Bingo, Horse Racing Game,
- Clubs: Bell Choir, Literary Club, Knitting Club, Gardening.
- Religious: Church Services, Rosary, Bible Study.
- Entertainment: Creative Arts, Popcorn & Movies, Holiday Parties, Trivia.
- Food: Themed Lunches, Happy Hour, Birthday Celebrations, Restaurant Outings, Ice Cream Socials, Food Trucks, Picnics in the Park, Coffee Bar.
- Exercise: Morning Exercise Classes, Walking Club, Afternoon Walks.
According to Luzzi, the 107-room facility is currently at approximately half capacity. The remaining rooms are empty and ready for new residents.
There are a few different apartment configurations to choose from, including two sizes of private apartments with their own bathroom. There are also semi-private, or shared, apartments.
Each residential room and bathroom has an emergency call bell that alerts staff when a resident needs assistance, so help is always near. Although apartments are furnished, residents are encouraged to bring cherished belongings and furnishings to make the space feel like theirs.
Admittance to Eden Heights of Olean takes two to three days to complete. There is an initial health assessment, and move-ins happen quickly. The community has 20 beds available for memory care residents with dementia and Alzheimer’s. Luzzi says there are presently 10 open beds for memory care.
According to its website, potential residents of Eden Heights are offered a free trial residence for one month. The feature gives likely residents a chance to try it out for a month to be sure they will feel at home.
About Premier Senior Living, LLC
A privately owned company, Premier Senior Living, LLC, is a senior housing owner and operator with headquarters in New York City. The company owns and operates 14 senior living communities in Michigan, North Carolina, New York, Ohio, and Pennsylvania.
PSL and its affiliated companies provide a spectrum of senior housing services, such as assisted living, independent living, and dementia/memory care.
The company has succeeded in acquiring high-end stabilized and troubled properties, improving its operations, and generating increased value. PSL has distinguished itself in markets with extremely favorable demographic trends and a preference for seniors to age in place or return home through a reverse migration.