The surroundings are now befitting the wonderful fare served, as a project 12-weeks in the making has come to a fabulous conclusion. The Millstone Restaurant at Monarch Landing has undergone a major renovation, and the results are earning rave reviews from residents, guests and staff.
"The dining room is the heart of any home, and that's certainly the case with the Millstone Restaurant," said Gideon Haynes, director of general services for the retirement community in Naperville. "This is where the residents and guests gather, connect, unwind and socialize."
It is also the venue where Monarch Landing's great dining is showcased. "Many of our residents have commented that the new décor is as impressive as local restaurants in this area," said Julie Roberts, dining services director. "Just yesterday we hosted a special tapas luncheon and it was amazing. Now, not only is the food first-rate, but the dining room looks first-rate as well."
The remodeling was undertaken as Monarch Landing reached its 10th anniversary. "This was a great opportunity to press the refresh button," Haynes said. "A driving force was to update the dining space, while creating more intimacy. The challenge was to simultaneously enhance the space's capacity to hold large events."
Haynes said that a lot of attention was paid to technology, with the integration of state-of- the- art audio-visual equipment. "We have three projectors concealed in the ceiling, as well as three screens. We can hold large functions while projecting visuals on screens which run along the side of the room," he said.
In order to maximize acoustics, the renovated space has two floating drop panel ceilings, designed to capture sound. "This helps eliminate sound bouncing around the room," said Haynes. This facilitates not only intimate discussions, but also large presentations. Furthermore, a hearing loop installed in the floor is designed to interact with coil pick-ups in commonly used hearing aids.
In order to undergo the renovations, the Millstone was gutted. "We replaced all of the aesthetics. The walls, flooring, ceilings…all of the hard features are new. There are new lighting and lighting controls. We formerly had fluorescent lighting. Now we have all canned and pendant lighting which is dimmable and is less harsh," said Haynes. "The carpeting in the entranceway was replaced with stone. In the past, we had a portable dance floor, but now we have this stone floor always available for dancing, which is something that the residents really enjoy."
A great deal of resident input for the design was solicited along the way. "We presented flooring, fabrics, and paint colors for their consideration. We lined up samples of chairs and the residents tested them. They were really instrumental in the final selection of many aspects of the room," said Haynes.
The project went "absolutely" according to plan said Haynes. "The residents are astounded by the change. It's been really well-received. When we started, there was apprehension about the change but when they saw the result, they were really excited," Haynes said.
The renovation was a project of BLDD Architects.
Monarch Landing is a Life Plan Community located on a scenic campus in Naperville, Illinois-named "one of America's best places to live and retire" by Modern Maturity, and "the best city for early retirement" by Kiplinger. Monarch Landing offers independent living, promoting a vibrant lifestyle for active seniors. The Springs at Monarch Landing offers assisted living memory support, enriched living, respite, rehabilitation and skilled nursing services, thus providing complete continuing care for seniors. Monarch Landing is owned by Senior Care Development and managed by Life Care Services. For additional information visit www.WelcomeToMonarchLanding.com or www.TheSpringsatMonarchLanding.com.