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The lure of travel, the comforts of home

Ann’s Choice has it all for this adventurer

Created date

July 7th, 2015
Ann's Choice resident with elephant
Ann's Choice resident with elephant

When Fran Smith and her husband researched retirement communities some years ago, she was thrilled to learn that , Erickson Living’s retirement community in Bucks County, Pa., equipped each apartment home with a washer and dryer. 

Its refundable entrance deposit was equally appealing. As detailed in its Residence and Care Agreement, if residents leave Ann’s Choice they’ll be refunded 90% of their entrance deposit. If they live their lives at Ann’s Choice, their estate will receive the refund. 

Back then, refund policies had short expiration dates. 

“As a result,” says Fran, “you’d have long-term care, but the assumption at most communities seemed to be you’d eventually need it. Erickson Living’s fee-for-service policy suggested you’d live a longer, healthier life.”

Certainly, the Smiths’ home at Ann’s Choice brightened Fran’s life. After 42 years in a big, old house surrounded by trees, she was thrilled with their light and airy corner apartment—and a community that afforded easy travel.

The freedom to travel

Before Ann’s Choice, Fran’s microbiologist husband traveled the world researching cholera while she stayed home in Jenkintown raising five children.

“I hadn’t been anywhere,” says Fran. “When he retired, I told him, ‘We’re going to travel.’” 

So began their journeys across America, across Canada, and around the world. 

They continued that habit at Ann’s Choice, where leaving for a trip is hassle-free. “You shut your door, sign out at the desk, and that’s it,” says Fran. 

Her most memorable trip, a European river cruise from Amsterdam to Vienna, was one the Smiths took with her brother-in-law and sister-in-law.

As the women explored each port along the way, they discovered they made compatible travel partners. After Fran’s husband passed away, the two traveled together.

First, they went to China. “It was interesting to see the poverty and the happiness,” Fran says. “Our countries don’t seem to get along, but people all have the same hopes and dreams. We could see that the Chinese want to live more like we do.”

In early 2014, the women spent 19 days in South Africa. Last fall, they took a river cruise from Vienna to the Black Sea. 

As always, they enjoyed ease of travel. Fran’s sister-in-law came to Ann’s Choice on departure day, and the community’s transportation department took them to the airport. 

The comforts of home

The many amenities and 150-plus campus activities make Ann’s Choice a comfortable place to live. 

Fran’s dentist practices in the campus’s on-site medical center, so she walks to her appointments.

She belongs to the German club, a spiritual book group, and leads an aerobics class. 

She enjoys lovely settings, including Ann’s Choice’s beautifully landscaped grounds or Warminster Community Park next door.

Fran has scores of friends to socialize with, and every weekend her daughter joins her for dinner and a movie on campus.  

“I’m so happy here,” she says. “I was afraid I’d shrivel up when my husband died, but Ann’s Choice was my lifeline. I couldn’t go anywhere without someone giving me a hug and saying how great he was. That was such a consolation.”