Splendido Opens Sonora, New Health Center

Tucson Independent Living Community’s Addition to Offer Comprehensive Care and Programs

TUCSON, Ariz. (July 7, 2008) – Splendido, an independent living community for those 55 and older just opened Sonora, a health center. Sonora offers 60 private apartments and suites that are dedicated to assisted living, memory support, skilled nursing and rehabilitation, short-term stays and hospice care. The health center is located on the grounds of Splendido and is open to the public.   

“Our objective is to establish the highest level of care for residents, which we call The Sonora StandardTM,” said Mark Blazer, executive director of Splendido. “We have developed a health center that provides comprehensive and responsive services and is staffed by employees trained with award-winning nationally recognized programs from the Mather LifeWays Institute on Aging.”

Inside Sonora are three distinct neighborhoods: Coronado for assisting living, Madera for memory support and Sabino for skilled nursing and rehabilitation. Each neighborhood includes a living room, activity area and restaurant-style dining room or bistro.  Interior Design Associates (IDA), a Nashville, Tennessee-based firm, created the interior design for the neighborhoods in Sonora. In 2007, Splendido was named “Best Continuing Care Retirement Community Interior Design” by the National Association of Home Builders due to IDA’s concepts.

“The services offered in Sonora’s neighborhoods enable residents to remain as self-sufficient as possible in surroundings that were designed to look and feel like ones they have known all their lives,” said Blazer. “Special attention was given to color palettes, tactile art, customized window treatments, and to memory boxes in our memory support neighborhood that feature special family treasures.”

 Sonora’s location in northwest Tucson is within two miles of Northwest Medical Center, which is a benefit for physician appointments and any special medical needs. The Sonora staff includes a registered nurse who is on call 24 hours a day. Nursing staff are permanently assigned to residents as well which results in stronger, more satisfying personal relationships.

Fred Randolph, administrator of Sonora states, “One-to-one attention is important because our staff will know when a resident wants their favorite snack or is eager to complete a jigsaw puzzle on a Sunday afternoon.”

At Sonora, food and positive dining experiences are a part of the residents’ everyday life. The community’s executive and pastry chefs – creating dishes in one of southern Arizona’s largest kitchens – focus each day on the taste, nutritional value and presentation of the cuisine.

“Preparing dishes that have the essence of comfort food, but also a focus on nutritional balance, allows residents to pamper their appetite while knowing their choices are good for them.” said Albert DiIeso, executive chef of Splendido and Sonora. “I, as well as my kitchen staff, make sure fresh, low-fat and heart-healthy meals are available during every dining experience. 

Staff members at Sonora are trained in progressive practices and approaches created by Mather LifeWays, a not-for-profit organization that co-owns and operates Splendido. Mather LifeWays Institute on Aging conducts research and develops training programs for senior living residences across the United States and beyond.

“A large part of creating a great community is setting strong standards and providing staff with education and ongoing training,” said Blazer. “With Splendido and Sonora, we have aligned these standards with our philosophy that the more our staff members know, the higher residents’ quality of life will be.”

For more information about Sonora, please call (520) 878-2612 or visit www.splendidotucson.com/sonora.



Splendido is a joint venture of Mather LifeWays, a not-for-profit organization headquartered in Evanston, Ill., that creates “Ways to Age Well” for older adults; and The Plaza Companies, a developer headquartered in Peoria, Ariz., that specializes in retirement community development. Opened in 2006, Splendido offers upscale resort-style living for adults 55 years and older through the 10,000-square-foot Saluté Spa & Fitness Center, indoor and outdoor swimming pools, 24-hour concierge service, four dining venues, an 18-hole putting course and cinema. In 2008, Splendido opened the Sonora health center, which is open to the public-at-large. To learn more about Splendido or the Sonora health center, call (520) 878-2612 or visit www.splendidotucson.com.