Otterbein SeniorLife Neighborhoods offer a unique approach to skilled nursing, rehabilitation, memory support, and long-term care services. Each small house neighborhood, located in nine residential areas across central and western Ohio, consists of five houses.
And every small house, at just over 7,000 square feet, is one-story with 12 private suites and shared living and dining spaces. Residents, referred to as elders, receive care as needed in a home-like environment and are actively involved in menu planning, cooking, and daily personal care and activity schedules.
But you might be wondering what it’s like inside a small house? Where are the private suites located in relation to the common areas? Let’s look at the floor plan and explore inside a small house at Otterbein.
What’s Inside a Small House?
The term “small house” might be misleading - over 7,000 square feet of living space isn’t considered on the small side! Rather, each small house is a close-knit community — after all, for elders, this is home.
Join us in exploring each area of a small house and discover what sets it apart from a traditional nursing home environment.
1. Private Suites
Every small house has 12 private suites, each with a private bath, and elders are encouraged to decorate with their personal treasures and favorite paint color to make them feel at home. The suites include an extra-wide hospital bed, recliner, dresser, and nightstand — or elders are free to bring in their own furniture.
The private baths feature walk-in showers with multiple shower heads and a fold-down bench. There are also grab-bars throughout, a height-adjustable mirror, and a secure medicine cabinet. Personal laundry services, life enrichment activities, Wi-Fi, and cable TV are included.
2. Residential Kitchen and Dining Area
You’ll find the private suites adjacent to, or steps from, the residential kitchen and dining area of each small house. Elders are encouraged to participate in meal planning and preparation alongside the staff. Elders, staff, and visitors all dine together at one large table and enjoy family-style, home-cooked meals.
There aren’t any specific meal times or planned menus. Each elder has a choice of when and what they’d like to eat. And the food is prepared by the partners who work in the house, so they personally know each elder’s likes and dislikes.
3. Family Room with Central Hearth
The kitchen and dining area flow into the family room with a central hearth to complete the open-concept living space in each small house. This is a cozy spot for elders to gather and visit with friends, family, and staff.
A variety of meaningful activities also take place here, including educational, cultural, recreational, and social events. Or, elders can sit back, relax, and enjoy a good book or chat with a neighbor in the comfort of their family room.
4. Den/Therapy Room
Elders in need of therapeutic services such as physical, respiratory, occupational, or speech therapy can receive this service without leaving their small house. A den, located in every small house, doubles as a therapy room and is used by an interdisciplinary team to meet the care needs of each elder.
The space offers a relaxing, comfortable, and quiet environment that can minimize the anxiety many people feel in a more institutional setting.
A salon/spa room is available in each small house for the elders’ barbering and beauty needs. This is especially convenient in times of inclement weather because there’s no need to set foot outside — instead, elders can simply take a short walk down the hall.
6. Screened Porch and Outdoor Patio
For warmer days when the weather is inviting, elders enjoy a screened porch and a secure, fenced-in, shaded outdoor patio with a garden. It’s a safe place to gather, sit among nature, and take in the neighborhood surroundings of green lawns and friendly neighbors.
Elders in each small house have access to 24-hour care as needed from a small team of licensed nurses, nursing assistants, and therapists. Whether you reside here permanently or temporarily for rehabilitation, you’ll be treated like family — part of the Otterbein family.
Discover Otterbein SeniorLife Neighborhoods
If you’re ready to experience a sense of belonging and connection in one of our small house neighborhoods, click on the button below to learn more.