Over the past two years, senior living communities have had to make substantial changes to the way they are designed and developed. Communities must create spaces that are appealing to residents and their families, while also ensuring these spaces are free of safety hazards and spacious, especially in the age of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Due to the growth of the senior population and their preference for aging at home, interior design will continue to be an important aspect for owners and operators to consider when building or renovating their communities.

Whether it’s an assisted living community, independent living community, or a retirement community, residents are looking for aesthetically pleasing common areas, beautiful indoor and outdoor spaces, with comfortable, durable furniture.

Interior design experts like Eight Twenty8 Design create innovative, stylish, and comfortable spaces for senior living communities.

Whether you’re interested in updating your current senior living community, developing a modern new community, or educating yourself on the upcoming senior living interior design trends, hiring an interior design company can take you from concept to reality.

Here’s what you can expect from senior living interior design in 2022.

What is Senior Living Interior Design?

Interior design is the art and science of creating interior spaces that are aesthetically pleasing and functional for the people using the space.

Senior living interior designers specialize in creating spaces that are specifically designed for senior-focused living environments. They are uniquely qualified and educated in areas that appeal to residents and team members who work in the communities.

Senior living design companies like Eight Twenty8 Design offer services that help with every step of the design process. From budgeting, to planning, to completing final installations, Eight Twenty 8 is there every step of the way to make sure every project they complete is top quality.

From there, they’ll help you finalize your project with introductions to trusted furniture and vendor suppliers, place furniture orders, schedule delivery, and installation.

As you can see, hiring a senior living interior design company has many benefits:

  • Fresh, innovative designs
  • Knowledge and experience in senior living interior design
  • Reduced costs
  • Avoid costly mistakes
  • Convenience
  • Access to industry professionals
  • Time management

Health & Wellness in Interior Design

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on the health and wellness of seniors. As a result, many seniors are adopting healthy lifestyles in order to prevent and control conditions like high blood pressure, diabetes, and heart disease.

In order to remain competitive, senior living communities are looking for creative ways to incorporate health and fitness into their design and amenities.

According to the International Council on Active Aging, 60% of senior living professionals said that by 2023 their communities will be based on a wellness lifestyle.

Communities with old and outdated fitness centers should consider a complete redesign with a clean, fresh look that includes virtual workout classes or even a healthy snack or juice bar.

Adding yoga classes, meditation studios, pools, and walking trails is a great way to attract health-conscious seniors.

Communities that encourage and facilitate healthy and active lifestyles will continue to thrive and trend in 2022.

Senior Living Tech & Artificial Intelligence Design

Seniors are more comfortable with technology than ever before. A report from Pew Research finds that 3 out of 4 baby boomers use a smartphone, 52% own a tablet, and 59% are active on media.

Many senior living communities have outdated, spotty WiFi connections and subpar technology. Interior designers can help with integrating innovative design with leading-edge technology that supports seniors’ physical, mental, and emotional health.

Residents expect to access high-speed internet and state-of-the-art technology throughout the community.

According to Senior Housing News, senior living providers have found that offering technology platforms to residents boosts occupancy.

Senior living communities can add technology in the following ways:

  • Life-streamed events, movies, games, and educational content
  • Virtual fitness trainers
  • Automated fall detection in resident apartments
  • Voice-activated smart lights and light bulbs
  • Floor lights in apartments
  • Fall detection technology
  • Voice-activated assistants
  • Improved bandwidth
  • Thermal temperature scanners for staff, residents, and visitors

All of the above technology solutions will continue to trend in 2022 and should be incorporated in the design of senior living communities.

2022 Senior Living Interior Design Color Trends

The baby boomer generation is tech-savvy, active, and social. Choosing the right color palette for your senior living community is vital to appeal to this unique group of seniors.

Color can transform how we feel, our energy levels, and our mood. For example, the wall color of a room can change the shape and size of the room. Paint colors can make older adults feel relaxed, energetic, stressed, and even confused.

Attention to color is critical when designing a senior living community. As we age, our vision changes, seniors may have problems with glare or perception. Senior living Interior designers are experts at incorporating color in ways that support and appeal to seniors.

Consider a room’s purpose before committing to a color scheme. For example, creating a color scheme for your lobby that is welcoming and relaxing is a great way to attract visiting seniors. Likewise, furniture and accent colors can transform a bland space into a warm and cozy oasis.

Have an in-depth conversation with your interior designer about how different colors impact seniors. For example, brighter colors may energize seniors in rehabilitation gyms or fitness centers.

Color choice is critical in memory care environments. Avoid flooring or high contrasting patterns that may confuse or cause dizziness in dementia residents. Solid colors in softer shades are a much better choice.

Blues, greens, and browns in natural shades can help create the homelike environment potential residents look for in senior living communities.

Bold jewel tones in green or gold are a popular accent for 2022. Trend forecasting company WGSN chose Orchid flower, a shade of vibrant pink, as the 2022 color of the year, solidifying the upcoming popularity of bold color accents.

For 2022 senior living color trends are about conveying a feeling of luxury, safety, comfort, and connection. Look for a balance of warm and cool tones with vibrant red, purple, and yellow pops for accents.

Senior Living Furnishing Trends for 2022

In 2022, furniture used in senior living communities will be modern, durable, clean-lined, and made of popular materials like linen and leather. The fabric choices should be soft to the touch but water and stain-resistant.

Furnishings should include safety and convenience features such as chairs with built-in phone chargers, cup holders, and sanitizing technology.

Prospective residents and their families prefer senior living communities that remind them of home. So whether they’re relaxing, entertaining, visiting family and friends, or socializing, residents will want to have furnishings that are both beautiful and comfortable.

Resident Apartment Designs Trends

Resident living spaces are arguably the most crucial room in a community. Residents want spaces that are private, luxurious, and comfortable.

Living spaces should be functional and designed with colors and accents that residents can incorporate with personal items and their personal style.

Natural tones, beautiful window treatments that enhance natural light, and sleek modern furniture is a must.

Resident’s rooms should include technology that helps them stay connected, entertained, and safe. Fall detection, voice automation technology, improved bandwidth, high-speed Wi-FI, and LED lighting are must-have design elements for 2022.

2022 Senior Living Common Area Designs

Baby boomers are changing the way senior living communities are designed. They’re independent, active, and social.

Residents eat, entertain guests, and socialize with neighbors in common areas. Therefore, thoughtful furniture positioning and space planning are key to designing functional common areas.

Common spaces should be beautiful and include furniture made of stain-resistant, easy-to-clean fabrics like vinyl, crypton, and rigid surface arms.

Community design should include cozy personal spaces where residents can spend time alone. Think colorful dividers, decorative screens, drapery, or a credenza. Trendy barn doors are great at dividing up a large space into smaller areas.

Interior Design Trends for Staff

The senior living industry was hit hard by the COVID-19  pandemic; employees were overworked and stressed. As a result, senior living communities struggled with low employee morale and staffing shortages.

Human resource departments are rethinking how they value staff and are focused on attracting employees with increased wages, benefits, and flexible work schedules.

Upcoming senior living design trends should focus on keeping staff safe with:

  • Touchless entry technology
  • Health screening technology
  • Additional delivery points
  • Staff lockers & private showers

Staff break rooms and lounges should be designed for relaxation with comfortable seating, TVs, charging stations, secured lockets, snacks, and beverages.

Beautiful private outdoor areas for staff adjacent to break rooms are a great way to give team members the opportunity to rest and recharge outdoors during their workday.

Well-designed safe areas for staff to relax and converse with coworkers are necessary for attracting and retaining employees.

Senior Living Dining Trends

Mealtime is one of the most important times of day in any home, and senior living communities are no different. Seniors look forward to socializing with residents and entertaining visiting family or friends over a delicious meal in a pleasant environment.

Today’s seniors are looking for more than just basic dining rooms; they’re looking for a variety of dining experiences that are aesthetically pleasing, well designed, safe, and functional.

As we enter 2022, seniors living communities will need to focus on these dining experiences for residents.

Bistros and Cafes

Imagine the look on a potential residents’ face when they tour your senior living community and see residents socializing while enjoying a steaming cup of coffee, delicious sandwich, or yummy pastry in your bistro or cafe.

Bistros and cafes are great spaces that encourage socialization and foster a feeling of community among residents and staff.

An interior designer can help you to create a bistro or cafe that is uniquely designed for your community while being both functional and beautiful.

These spaces should be in optimal locations, with creative themes, gorgeous colors, comfortable furniture, and well-planned seating arrangements.

Outdoor Dining Areas

More senior living communities are creating outdoor dining spaces for residents. Converting an outdoor patio into an extra dining area during the summer months is the perfect way to use space for different functions.

Adding a food truck or a modern outdoor kitchen with a grill, bar, and drink station will wow residents and visitors.

2022 Trends in Outdoor Space & Amenities

Potential residents and their loved ones are becoming more interested in the outdoor spaces offered at senior living communities.

Well-designed outdoor spaces benefit seniors by reducing anxiety, improving sleep, and promoting an overall sense of well-being.

Existing communities should update outdoor spaces with additional green space, colorful gardens, tree canopies, and modern outdoor furniture with colorful cushions and pillows.

New communities should consider golf courses, putting greens, low-impact sports courts, dog parks, and swimming pools.

Beautifully designed outdoor dining spaces, balconies, patios, and recreational spaces are the key to attracting new residents and their families.

Looking Ahead to 2022

As we approach 2022, current and future senior living communities need to be aware of the changes that are occurring in the industry.

Many seniors are choosing to age in place. Those who choose to retire in senior living communities expect safe environments that are impeccably designed.

The unique preferences and expectations of the aging baby boomer population, the demand for increased safety precautions, innovative technology, and beautifully designed living spaces, common areas, and outdoor spaces are in demand.

Whether you’re expanding, rebranding, renovating, in the planning stage, or beginning new construction, hiring an experienced interior design firm can take your project to the next level.

Incorporating these new senior living design trends in 2022 will make your senior living community more marketable, functional, and appealing to both current and future residents.

For more information and to start your project, set up a free consultation with our senior living interior design experts.

“Knowing the direct impact I’ve experienced with seniors, just through the basics of design, fuels my passion for improving the lives of people who mean the most to us.”
— Keri Moore-Muñiz, President