First Resident Moves into The Merion’s New North Tower

As The Merion unveiled its new, north tower, Cloté Smith was pleased to be its first resident. “I am so happy to be where I am, and I’m ready to begin my next 20 years,” said Cloté. The 73-year old, long-time resident of Arlington Heights set her sights on The Merion a couple of years ago when she first learned of the addition being built, adjacent to the senior living community’s totally renovated south tower. “I set my eye on the prize and everything fell into place. I moved in on September 7th,” she said.

When she first decided to move into a retirement community, Cloté carefully investigated her options. “The Merion felt more like home than like a senior living community. The amenities are wonderful but, more importantly, it made me feel like I could be part of something special. I got a feeling that it was someplace I wanted to be,” she said.

Cloté gratefully accepted assistance from The Merion’s On the Move Program as she prepared to move into The Merion. The initiative provides the assistance of a professional senior move manager who helps coordinate the logistics of downsizing for new residents. “That was excellent. I get attached to things. They helped me decide what was important and what wasn’t,” Cloté said. Although apartment homes at The Merion come beautifully furnished, she decided to “mix” their furniture with treasured pieces of her own. “The space is not as large as I’m accustomed to but actually it’s fine. It’s all I need,” she said of her apartment, which faces Chicago Avenue. “Being the first resident, I was able to choose the exact apartment that I wanted. It’s lovely.”

Cloté has rave reviews for the dining at The Merion. “The food is outstanding,” she said. “And the staff is just wonderful. I have dietary restrictions and they accommodate me so that I don’t worry.” She added that she loves to cook, so she still prepares some of her own meals in the beautifully appointed kitchen in her apartment.

A self-professed culture enthusiast, Cloté enjoys the abundant offerings not only at The Merion, but also within close proximity. “I go to lectures and programs. I love the location of The Merion because of the easy access to Chicago, where I’m a Lyric Opera subscriber, attend the symphony, shop and meet friends,” she said. Cloté plans to sell her car because with her ideal location, she’s finding she doesn’t really need it.

“My life here is coming together so well. Even better than I imagined. I’m blessed to be the first person in the new, north tower. It’s exciting,” Cloté said. Asked if she’d recommend living there, Cloté said that she already has, and will continue to do so.

Describing her feeling about life at The Merion, Cloté exclaimed, “Love, love, love!”

The Merion is a luxury senior living rental community located in the heart of Evanston, steps away from Northwestern University and the beaches of Lake Michigan. An independent living community, The Merion boasts an on-site Wellness Center operating 24/7. The Merion’s unique partnership with nearby Symphony of Evanston, which offers rehabilitation, assures that residents can be cared for, when and if their health needs change, within close proximity of their apartment. The Merion is the Preferred Senior Living Community of Northwestern University Athletics. For additional information, visit or call 847-253-7941