For Michael Weissman, calling The Merion a “retirement community” isn’t quite accurate. At the age of 65, Weissman is still working, with no apparent end in sight. He finds that living in the luxury senior rental community, in the heart of downtown Evanston, suits his needs and desires perfectly. “I’m better living here than anywhere else. It was a good decision to move here,” he said.
Mike first moved to what is now The Merion in 2004 when it was still called The North Shore Retirement Hotel. The newly renovated building boasts beautiful, furnished apartments, as well as multiple dining venues, an on-site fitness center, a library, a wellness center and more.
A bachelor, Mike has lived in several different apartments through the years, until discovering the home that he says has been a great fit. “It was a good choice to live here. I feel like there’s security, safety and a lot of wonderful, lovely people. And there’s meals, maid service and activities, one of which is music,” he said.
Music is of extreme importance to Mike who is an amateur musician. “I have an immense guitar collection. Nine of them,” he said. “I play guitar pretty well and would love to someday be part of a musical ensemble. That’s been my dream.” In the meantime, he said he was thrilled that moving to his studio apartment didn’t necessitate downsizing his guitar collection. “I have five on display right now, and four packed away.” He also has a collection of sound and recording equipment.
Mike finds the location of The Merion to be perfect. He commutes to his job at a Chicago brokerage firm with ease. “I can take the purple line or Metra or the bus, anywhere I want to go. If I want to walk around downtown Evanston or Northwestern, I can do that too,” he said adding that there are hundreds of restaurants and shops within close proximity as well. “No need to drive or have a car to worry about.”
Two years ago, as part of the massive renovation project at The Merion, Mike’s apartment was completely remodeled. “It’s beautiful. It’s very modern. You’d swear that it was new from the start,” he said.
With several dining venues on-site at The Merion from which to choose, Mike said that he tends to frequent the Crystal Lounge. “The food is great, the atmosphere is informal and laid back. I really like that,” he said. “Formerly, I’d go out to eat but it’s nice to have great meals available here.”
Most of all, Mike relishes the fact that living at The Merion makes his life easy. “With a totally furnished apartment, great and convenient meals and maid service, I’m comfortable, I feel stable, I feel good. There are people around me and I’m not alone. I’ve made some nice friends here.”
As seen in the Chicago Tribune.