Operators of a recently opened senior living complex in Costa Mesa are hoping their new residents will live as if on vacation every day. After all, the place offers cool breezes, a saltwater pool, organic gardens and a two-story clubhouse.
The 215-unit Azulón at Mesa Verde, at 1500 Mesa Verde Drive East, is one of two 55-and-older housing facilities to open in the city in recent years.
During a recent tour of the campus, Anton Segerstrom of Mesa Verde Partners, owner of the facility, noted that the open-air corridors allow breezes to sweep through, giving it a Santa Barbara resort feel.
“It was a great opportunity to take advantage of that,” Segerstrom said. “There’s always a breeze in Costa Mesa.”
Segerstrom, son of South Coast Plaza founder Henry Segerstrom, said Azulón took its design cues from Spanish Colonial architecture and even the historic Diego Sepúlveda Adobe down the street.
“Instead of trying to be Italian or French, we thought, ‘Why not celebrate Costa Mesa’s roots?’” he said.
Segerstrom, who was personally involved in the designing and planning of the property, said he’s particularly proud of Azulón’s landscaping and how lush it looks, even in its early stages. Dozens of mature trees were replanted on the property.
“I spend most of my time in the retail world,” he said, “but this was something the family wanted to do. They asked me if I wanted to help spearhead it.”
The complex has 11 one- and two-bedroom floor plans. Units range from 736 square feet to 1,230 square feet. Monthly rents start at $1,630. The units contain various touches, such as arched doorways, stainless steel appliances and granite countertops, as well as in-unit washers and dryers.
The 7.5-acre campus, which once housed a movie theater, ice rink and the Kona Lanes bowling alley, contains about 40% open space.
The City Council approved development there in 2010.
Azulón is separated from the Mesa Verde Center, which is anchored by Vons, by a public pedestrian pathway that planners are calling the Paseo. Once complete, it will feature an outdoor cafe.
“It’s all interconnected,” Segerstrom said. “You can sit out here and meet your friends for coffee or a glass of wine in the evening.”
In addition to the pool, Azulón has a saltwater spa, a gym, outdoor barbecues, cabanas and a yoga studio. Residents can work in the development’s four organic gardening beds, which also are maintained by professional gardeners.
Produce grown there will be used in the demonstration kitchen, located in the 8,300-square-foot clubhouse.
Segerstrom pointed to the citrus garden, which contains trees that yield blood oranges, Meyer lemons and kumquats.
Susan Sirota, representing Legacy Partners Residential, Azulón’s management company, described little touches throughout the property, like the hand-painted artist tiles along the pool and Spanish light posts. And each floor has a different style of balcony railings, she said.
The bottom floors have patios.
A lighting director from South Coast Repertory did work for Azulón, Segerstrom noted.
“We are long-term residents of Costa Mesa,” he added. “We’ve been here over 100 years. We want something the city can be proud of, and we’re very proud of it. It’s been a joy to put this together.”