Inner-city towers up to 20 storeys high and a converted public service office complex with its own babbling brook are among the new retirement living projects short-listed to be named as the best in Australia.

The Retirement Living Council has listed the finalists which are in the running for the “Best Retirement Living Project” award for 2021.

The winner will be named at the industry association’s national summit in late November on the Gold Coast.

Here are the finalists below who have listings on Downsizing.com.au.

The Grace (South Melbourne)

Completed in July 2019, the 18-storey The Grace tower in South Melbourne epitomises the current trend towards vertical retirement villages. 

The Grace is an 18-storey tower at South Melbourne

Each of the 79 apartments features magnificent views of the city skyline or Albert Park Lake. 

The Australian Unity development also boasts cutting edge innovation and design features, so you can retire in style. 

The recreation spaces encourage socialising and an active lifestyle.

They include an indoor pool, boutique cinema, gym and themed clubrooms on every second floor. 

The Grace also has a rooftop terrace with stunning views to the horizon, and there’s a great clubhouse in the basement for visiting grandchildren that includes activities such as a table tennis table and foosball.

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Aveo Carindale (Carindale, Brisbane)

The first stage of the Aveo Carindale was completed in July 2019 and included two 10-storey towers, located just 10km east of the Brisbane CBD.

Artist's impression of the Aveo Carindale project

Loaded with storage, the light and airy independent living apartments at Aveo Carindale village feature modern conveniences such as the ergonomically designed kitchen, which make life that little bit easier. 

The open plan living apartments also open out to a sizable balcony or courtyard, with stunning views. 

There is also an onsite bar, restaurant, pool, gym and beauty salon. 

The six-stage development will eventually include 432 independent living apartments and a 115-bed high care facility, with the final stage completed by 2038.

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Greenway Views (Tuggeranong, Canberra)

At Greenway Views, operator LDK has converted a former public service office complex into a retirement living project which sprawls across 3.7 hectares and will eventually contain 317 premium apartments. 

Apartments in stage two of the Greenway Views project will have views over the Brindabella mountain range

Following the sale and completion of 200 first stage apartments in May 2020, LDK has started marketing 117 apartments across two buildings in the project’s second and final stage. 

These apartments have been cleverly designed to capture stunning views of the Brindabella mountain range, or the village’s own babbling brook. 

A big selling point of Greenway Views is that residents will never need to leave, due to the fact they can either receive care in their current home or an on-site central care hub at the site (known as the Aspire by LDK). 

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Latitude One (Port Stephens, NSW)

While all the other finalists are retirement villages, Latitude One is a new land lease community operated by Ingenia Lifestyle.

Positioned at Anna Bay in the scenic Port Stephens, Latitude One’s low maintenance luxury homes by Ingenia Lifestyle come in a variety of sizes, surrounded by subtropical gardens. The marine lifestyle is also only a short distance away. 

Al fresco area of the clubhouse at the Latitude One project at Port Stephens

Ingenia Lifestyle has sought to enhance the feeling of space inside the homes by using high ceilings and creating living rooms that open out to alfresco areas for relaxing or dining. 

Latitude One’s communal features include a cinema, library, sports bar and bowling green, heated pool and gym.

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The Aerie (Narrabundah, Canberra)

The Aerie enjoys an elevated position, so residents can take pleasure in the sweeping views over Narrabundah and Canberra. 

This Lendlease retirement village is nestled in a leafy pocket and boasts spacious verandahs, alfresco areas and resort facilities. 

Clubhouse at The Aerie retirement living project in Canberra

At the same time, downsizers benefit from being close just 9km from the city. 

The 92 independent living units feature a range of floor plans and are expected to be completed in mid-2022. 

A centrepiece of the development is the $5 million retirement village clubhouse, which like The Aerie, has been inspired by Canberra’s iconic heritage buildings.

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Glengara Care (Tumbi Umbi, Central Coast, NSW)

Glengara Care prides itself as a positive alternative to aged care, allowing residents to move from low to high care without moving from their apartment. 

The RetireAustralia project hosts 70 premium care apartments in its existing Glengara retirement village on the central New South Wales coast. 

RetireAustralia's Glengara Care project

Each apartment is designed with subtle touches to help support residents’ needs for years to come. Amenities include a pool, library and hair salon. 

The village also includes a vibrant social calendar, enabling residents to live an active life in a secure neighbourhood where people look out for each other.

Sports facilities are also nearby as well as the stunning Tuggerah Lake and Central Coast beaches.

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Birdwood Park (Newcastle, NSW)

The panoramic 13-storey high views across the harbour and city skyline are a drawcard of Birdwood Park at Long Tan Village. 

The vertical retirement village RSL LifeCare is Newcastle’s first, conveniently in the heart of town. The 76 apartments and penthouses offer state-of-the-art living with open plan areas, generous areas and top-of-the-line fittings. 

The Birdwood Park project has stunning views over Newcastle Harbour

That’s not to mention the balcony views and sky lounge. 

Other perks include an onsite chef and hair salon. The location also offers great access to the waterfront and the light rail is within a stroll. 

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Comment from our CEO

Downsizing.com.au CEO Amanda Graham said the calibre of the finalists this year showed just how much retirement operators were keenly attuned to the changing needs of consumers.

“Intelligently designed and conveniently located, these vibrant new developments are offering great lifestyle choices to meet the growing and varied needs of Australian downsizers,” she said.

Ben Myers, the Executive Director of the Retirement Living Council, said that he was proud of the industry for its focus on supporting residents and delivering outstanding built-form outcomes over such a challenging year. 

“We really do have cause to stop and celebrate our award finalists in 2021,” he said. 

The last year has, if anything, proven to the industry that we have incredibly resilient and driven people that provide award-winning developments, initiatives and services.

“They deserve to be celebrated, because their achievements set new and high benchmarks that will help lead the industry into the future.” 

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