New Joint Venture to Own and Operate 32 Former Holiday Properties

A new senior living brand is on the scene—and it’s launching in buildings once run by the nation’s largest independent living provider.

The Solstice Senior Living portfolio currently includes 32 independent living properties formerly operated by Winter Park, Florida-based Holiday Retirement. Solstice recently was formed through a joint venture between Carlsbad, California-based management company Integral Senior Living and real estate investment trust (REIT) NorthStar Healthcare Income. The Solstice properties are located in 12 states across the U.S., with the largest concentrations being seven properties in California, five properties in Texas and five properties in Washington.

Integral CEO/COO Collette Valentine-Gray confirmed to Senior Housing News that the Solstice buildings formerly were operated by Holiday, adding that she could not comment on the reasoning behind Holiday’s decision to hand over management of the communities to Solstice.

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The decision to step away from these buildings comes during a transformational time for Holiday.

In a matter of several months, the company relocated its headquarters from Oregon to Florida, abandoned its long-standing management model in favor of a more traditional one, and hired Dr. Bill Thomas as its first-ever chief wellness officer. Holiday also launched a new home care venture, Milo, with Thomas’ guidance.

Adjusting to the changes hasn’t been entirely smooth sailing, as occupancy numbers revealed.

Occupancy for New Senior Investment Group’s (NYSE: SNR) same-store portfolio in the second quarter of 2017, for example, fell 270 basis points year-over-year, and the majority of this decrease was fueled by its communities managed by Holiday.

Holiday’s occupancy also concerned National Health Investors (NYSE: NHI), one of the largest private-pay senior housing owners in the country.

“I’m concerned whenever a company like that has as much turnover as they did last year and then moves their corporate headquarters across the country and turns over much of their back-office personnel,” President and CEO Eric Mendelsohn said during NHI’s second-quarter 2017 earnings call in November. “And then of course changes their management model in the buildings from live-in managers to external professional management.”

As of March 31, 2017, Holiday operated 303 properties nationwide, making it the second largest senior living provider in the country, according to recently released data from industry association Argentum.

Written by Mary Kate Nelson

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