Resthaven received a planning grant for $12,000 from the Holland/ Zeeland Community Foundation. The grant will allow Resthaven to develop a plan to prioritize recommended facility improvements at The Warm Friend, Resthaven’s historic apartment-style, independent living center for 70 active seniors. Though the building has been well maintained over the years, it is in need of significant system upgrades and infrastructure repairs.
“Resthaven is excited to be a steward of this historic building that has played a large role in the story of our community. We want to do our due diligence to maintain and preserve The Warm Friend so it can be enjoyed for many generations,” said Deedre Vriesman, President/CEO of Resthaven.
The grant will help Resthaven complete a master plan for The Warm Friend and conduct a research study to gain input from the residents and community. Results from each of these activities will be used to prioritize, evaluate and execute facility renovations. Master planning will begin in September, but some of the renovations have already begun such as new windows at The Warm Friend.
Resthaven is working closely with the local Historic Preservation Planner as well as the Michigan State Historic Preservation Office to keep the integrity of the historic structure and align with historic preservation standards.
The Warm Friend has a long and storied history in the Holland community, beginning as a hotel constructed in 1925. The building operated as a hotel for decades, hosting dignitaries and celebrities in its heyday when it was touted as the premier hotel in the region. Resthaven purchased The Warm Friend in 1982 to provide independent living for area seniors. It has been thoughtfully maintained and restored over the past 37 years to retain the building’s historic charm.