It took longer than expected for Lake Gibson Health and Rehabilitation Center at Lake Gibson Village to open its doors, due to an unwelcome surprise called COVID-19. The pandemic arrived 18 months after construction began.

The related turbulence delayed the building’s unveiling until February, but the organization remained focused on putting its stamp on skilled nursing and post-acute care. Its 77,000-square-foot, $25 million facility in Lakeland, FL, offers 120 beds with 32 private and 47 semi-private rooms. It provides full rehabilitation and a complement of therapies in an environment designed to help residents and patients feel like they are at a healthcare resort, says executive director Mike Bradley.

“The many challenges the pandemic caused have certainly flowed into the opening of this facility,” Bradley says. “One example is we were not able to have the traditional open house. We had to limit the amount of people that could attend at any one time to remain compliant with CDC recommendations.”

Nevertheless, the freshly opened SNF and rehab center are working to gain an advantage in the competitive, post-acute care landscape. At the heart of the center’s strategy is offering intensive clinical services and high-tech features within a luxury setting.

“The facility’s use of space, technology advances and spa-like amenities have raised the bar considerably,” Bradley says. “The large smart-enabled televisions, enhanced call light system, top-of-the-line therapy equipment, combined with the resort amenities of beauty spas, movie theaters and chef-prepared culinary experiences set us apart.”

For intensive clinical services, the physical therapy suite includes specialized orthopedic, cardiac and stroke rehabilitation programs, along with physical, occupational and speech therapies. The new health and rehab center is also totally electronic, with all records organized and stored digitally. The semi-private rooms were designed to be what Bradley calls “a butterfly suite, where each resident has individual space, including a window and the ability to be truly separate from roommates.”

Promoting tranquility

The aesthetic and functional design of Lake Gibson Health and Rehabilitation Center was created to promote an atmosphere of tranquility and relaxation, Bradley says. Lush landscaping with calming, cascading waterfalls are hallmarks of the Florida-inspired décor. Views of the tropical courtyard are accessible throughout the building and are the aesthetic centerpiece of the design, Bradley says.

“The resort atmosphere in the facility is apparent as soon as you enter,” he says. “The lobby is designed in a way to both be inviting and opulent. It is an environment that is conducive to wellness and peace.”