First Indian-American retirement resort opens in US

Washington, July 21 (IANS) A community called ‘ShantiNiketan Retirement Resorts’ has opened in Florida (US) to offer a home for the elderly Indian-Americans in the US, media reported.

Situated in Tavares, Florida, ShantiNiketan is an age-restricted community where at least one of the residents should be above 55 years of age.

It is a gated community with 174 condominiums, vegetarian meals (including Jain meals), multi-faith prayer rooms and daily bhajans and a yoga/meditation hall amid serenity and peace.

This is part of the first retirement community for Indian-Americans over the age of 55 in the US.

After finding that retiring to India is not practical for many Persons of Indian Origin (PIOs) while their kids are working in the US, Indian-American businessman Iggy Ignatius decided to build a place for such people who are now out of an active professional life but want to stay close to where their children are.

According to ShantiNiketan’s website, each condo comes with a standard refrigerator, dishwasher and oven range. Microwave, washer and dryer are available as an upgrade.

Guest of any age can visit and stay with the residents — however, there is a maximum limit of 30 days stay per year for children below 18 years, according to information available on the resort’s website.

The place has a lush greenery-filled large central courtyard. After the courtyard is the main clubhouse which has vegetarian and non-vegetarian kitchens, dining hall, gym room, health room, and other meeting rooms.

While all meals for a day come at $11.25 a person, meals for a month will cost $225. There is also a computer room with high-speed internet for those who do not have their own laptops to be able to check their emails, among other things.

A mechanical engineering and management graduate from Birla Institute of Technology and Science (BITS) Pilani, and an MBA from University of Illinois-Urbana Champaign, Ignatius moved to Tavares in Florida with his wife in early 2008 to execute this project.

He became the first resident of ShantiNiketan Phase 1 in March 2010, the website said.

After Florida, Ignatius is planning such retirement resorts in New Jersey, California Bay Area, Los Angeles, Dallas, Houston, Chicago, and Washington D.C.

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