KUALA LUMPUR: The demographic transformation Malaysia is currently undergoing – 15 percent of its population will comprise people aged 60 and above by 2030 – has spawned a need for more facilities and infrastructure to ensure the well-being of senior citizens.
Taking note of this, Sunway Healthcare Group recently opened a resort-style serviced apartment scheme next to its Sunway Medical Centre in Bandar Sunway, Selangor.
Called Sunway Sanctuary, which opened its doors on June 6 this year, its premium residences are aimed at “active seniors” in search of a “curated” lifestyle and easy access to medical services and facilities.
Spanning 100,000 square feet (about 9,290 square metres) of built-up area across two floors, it offers a host of fitness, wellness and recreational amenities and comprises 473 studio and one- and two-bedroom units, exclusively available for rent at rates starting from RM8,050 a month.
Medical tourists seeking treatment at Sunway Medical Centre are allowed short-term stays at Sunway Sanctuary for around RM350 a night.
Developments like Sunway Sanctuary, which is managed and operated by Sunway Healthcare Group, also tend to set their sights on medical travellers, more so now with Malaysia’s medical tourism sector recovering from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Bernama was among a group of media representatives invited by the Malaysia Healthcare Travel Council (MHTC) to tour Sunway Sanctuary recently.
Describing the development as a modern retirement facility designed to provide active seniors with comfortable accommodation and a holistic lifestyle prioritising a balanced mind, body and soul, its general manager Leonard Theng told Bernama exclusive health packages are also offered to residents of Sunway Sanctuary aged 55 and above.
“Our doors are open not only to Malaysians but also expatriates and healthcare tourists. The interesting thing here is that it (Sunway Sanctuary) is directly linked to Sunway Medical Centre where our residents can have easy access to quality health and medical services. It can also be considered as a ‘senior care’ facility that provides personalised services depending on individual needs,” he said.
Pointing out that Sunway Sanctuary emulates Japan and Australia’s retirement villages, Theng said their facility caters to not only the needs of the financially independent senior community in Kuala Lumpur but also those from the Southeast Asian region as well as Hong Kong, Australia and European countries.
Sunway Sanctuary’s current residents include foreigners, particularly Singaporeans, who find it more convenient to stay there whilst undergoing treatment at Sunway Medical Centre.
According to Theng, Sunway Sanctuary is drawing insights from countries such as Australia and Japan that are known for their expertise and skills in managing the elderly.
“An impressive 28 percent of the total stays (at Sunway Sanctuary) are attributed to international travellers and expatriates. This statistic underscores the sanctuary’s global appeal, indicating that its exceptional offerings are drawing visitors from around the world,” he said.
He said the figure is expected to rise significantly with the strategic focus of Sunway Sanctuary’s sales and marketing efforts shifting towards the overseas markets.
“This trend not only highlights the sanctuary’s international allure but also suggests a promising trajectory, making it clear that Sunway Sanctuary is poised to become an even more preferred choice for senior travellers,” he added.
Theng said meeting the needs of the senior community is not exactly burdensome to the Sunway group as it has extensive experience in the fields of healthcare and hospitality.
“Through these advantages, we are able to harness our expertise to provide the best facilities and care to our elderly residents, considering the many issues they tend to have,” he said.
Among the many facilities at Sunway Sanctuary are a gymnasium, mini-cinema, library, karaoke lounge, games room, sauna, heated infinity pool and rehabilitation centre.
“The pool and rehabilitation centre can be used by patients undergoing stroke therapy… we have (qualified) staff to guide them and provide them with the appropriate treatments and therapies,” he said.
It also has a health centre where residents can go for basic check-ups and health monitoring, blood tests and nutritional advice.
However, residents will be referred to Sunway Medical Centre for further examinations if they are at risk of facing a serious illness. – Bernama.