Mill Vista Lodge at WindCrestHighlands Ranch, Colorado

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It was the objective of the program to utilize “best practices” in the long-term care industry and proven design concepts for culture change to provide a state-of-the-art facility that supports person-centered care and a non-institutional, home-like environment. Consistent with this objective, the architects and development team members from Erickson began by programming the building to contain life-style spaces, amenity spaces and a variety of flex-activity areas to accommodate a variety of activities that are consistent with changing expectations among newer generations of seniors and their families. 

Utilizing familiar images from the community, along with functional space patterns from everyday family living, the architects conceived the building as a series of neighborhoods that contain de-centralized living and dining areas that are family friendly and that promote spontaneous socialization. The open kitchens in each neighborhood afford residents a connection to normal everyday living, along with opportunities for participation and observation of kitchen activities. The same concept extends to other functions that occur as a part of and adjacent to the great rooms that occur at each neighborhood. These include various activity venues, bistros, spa, fitness facility, self-accomplish laundry rooms, and a flexible conference room for smaller group gatherings and social meetings. Strong indoor-outdoor connections and outdoor gathering spaces were established at all levels of care and at all levels of the structure. The commitment to meaningful outdoor spaces includes a roof-top sensory garden and outdoor activity area that maximizes the commanding views of the surrounding Rocky Mountains that exist on the site. 

Project Location

Highlands Ranch, Colorado

Project Type

Assisted Living, Memory Care, and Skilled Nursing


96,000 SF


Erickson Living

“Throughout our lives, we all formulate ideals and expectations for our living environment. These expectations include elements of image, function, size and scale that are derived from the homes that we all have lived in. Relating to these elements of home is both a prosthetic and therapeutic approach to providing environments for seniors. We can utilize the power of architecture and design to allow seniors to live the way they have always lived, while providing more variety of opportunities for a full and engaging life. The Mill Vista Lodge was designed to do exactly that.”

The project was awarded First Place in the National Association of Home Builders 55+ Design Award Program.

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