Dementia, and specifically Alzheimer's, is a serious, growing problem. In fact, 1 out of every 10 adults over the age of 65 has Alzheimer’s dementia. As Saint Paul’s senior population continues to grow (18.67% growth between 2014 and 2019), so does the concern about aging and the risk of cognitive impairment.
In Saint Paul, the number of deaths for those 65 and older caused or partly caused by Alzheimer’s disease increased by 38.68% between 2014 and 2019. To put that in perspective, the number of deaths from all causes for that same age group only increased by 7.66%, showing that Alzheimer’s is a serious concern in the region. Overall, the percentage of seniors’ deaths related to Alzheimer’s is higher than the rest of the nation (14.11% in Saint Paul vs. 6.46% in the U.S.).
To help families and caregivers of those with Alzheimer’s or other forms of cognitive impairment find the support and care their loved ones need, we applied our unique methodology and spent dozens of hours researching senior living communities in Saint Paul. In addition to an overview of the communities’ best features, this guide highlights the best memory care facilities in the city, and gives information about pricing, types of care provided, residents’ reviews, and more.
According to the Alzheimer’s Association, 83% of all caregivers are unpaid family members, relatives, or other friends, and nearly half of all care is for older adults with some form of dementia. Caregiving, especially when it involves Alzheimer’s or dementia, is extremely exhausting and time-consuming, leading many caregivers to feel isolated and overwhelmed.
As a loved one continues to progress through the stages of dementia and his or her cognitive abilities continue to decline, behavioral problems, safety, and general care often become more than one caregiver can handle. This is when it’s important to find extra help, and residential facilities that have specialized memory care programs are often the best solution.
In addition to providing a safe environment, memory care programs seek to delay or halt cognitive decline while providing the opportunity for a social, independent lifestyle.
To choose the best memory care facilities in Saint Paul, our team of researchers started by using our unique methodology to develop a list of contenders. We further refined the list in the next phase of our process by completing hands-on research for each one of the companies that we developed. Finally, we compiled online reviews from residents and families and wrote summaries of each facility that made it through our selection process.
Overall, our team:
Brookdale Eagan is on a serene campus near Fish Lake Park and Eagan Town Center. Its lush grounds with mature trees are complemented by the building’s two inner courtyards and two large secured patio areas with gardening spaces. Dedicated to memory care, the facility features classic town square-themed common areas designed with old-fashioned storefronts and a vintage-style lamp post. These areas include the restaurant-style dining room, cafe, library, salon and life skills stations. Brookdale Eagan’s Clare Bridge Daily Path program lets residents thrive in structured routines with fun activities. Regular activities include cooking and baking, creative arts, pet therapy, outings and intergenerational programs. The town square’s brick road-style central lobby is used for various happenings such as holiday parties, live entertainment, educational lectures and bowling games. All resident suites are ground-level and have accessible bathrooms, 24-hour emergency response systems and large windows for inviting plenty of natural light.
A delighted loved one shares, "My father, who has lived at Brookdale Eagan for 2+ years now, continues to receive extraordinary care … Not only has Brookdale’s staff been able to keep me and my family fully connected with Dad during the quarantine, but also call me with updates or text me with pictures or videos … Dad has simply flourished …”
Brookdale Edina is an 18-story community that provides quality care in a luxurious setting. The 24/7 staff receives ongoing training to help residents with Alzheimer’s and dementia, using a combination of research-based therapies and mind-enriching activities suited to individual needs. The community features a 24-hour security system and easily navigable environments painted with calm, soothing colors, while daily programs encourage residents’ skills with options ranging from art projects to brain games and dancing. Nutritious meals include a multitude of snacks, side dishes and entrees served throughout the day. Residents can swim at the indoor pool, exercise at the fitness center or get a makeover at the beauty/barber shop. An on-site library, general store, billiards and postal services are also available, along with indoor/outdoor common areas and complimentary transportation.
Visiting relatives note the kind team and ample activities. "The staff is cordial, helpful, friendly and accommodating," one family member says. "They have happy hour, card nights, exercises and trips... They have a bus that takes a loop around the Edina area and connects them free of charge to doctors, dentists, Target, shopping and a movie theater."
Located in the charming town of North Oaks near Minneapolis, Brookdale North Oaks is a dedicated memory care community. Local conveniences include shopping and dining, and there are three hospitals located within 10 miles. The community is specially designed to offer a safe and comforting space for memory care residents. Residents can safely wander outdoors, with an enclosed courtyard and garden and walking paths around the landscaped grounds. Additional amenities include a therapy room, whirlpool, salon, crafts studio and a charming indoor Town Square. The community utilizes the person-centered Clare Bridge approach for memory care. Residents are surrounded by those with similar cognitive abilities and can take part in six different programs per day designed to maintain abilities and encourage skills. A wide range of activities are available, and highly trained staff provides 24/7 care and support.
Reviewers were impressed by the friendly and caring staff and the overall environment of the community. One family member writes, "We are very impressed with Brookdale North Oaks! The staff is very attentive, caring and professional. They made the transition very smooth and we can't say enough about the environment.” Another adds, "Cannot say enough about Brookdale North Oaks, their staff and the care that our loved one is receiving!”
Located in leafy surrounds, Cerenity Humboldt offers a serene living environment for St Paul-based seniors with Alzheimer's and other memory-related conditions. The Residence offers care for those with early-stage dementia, while The Care Center cares for those with more advanced conditions. The Live 2B Healthy exercise program helps residents stay healthy, and staff are on-site 24/7 to help residents as needed. To engage residents' senses, interests and cognition, the community offers arts and crafts activities, choir, and card and board games. Additionally, residents have the opportunity to discuss current events and reminisce about their past as part of the Coffee Talk program. Presentations and community outings are also scheduled to create special moments. Even the mealtime set-up in the Humboldt Bluff Cafe offers the opportunity for seniors to socialize with other residents, strengthening their memory and connections.
A resident's family member writes, "It is a very caring and warm place. It is very inviting, and the colors are bright. It is so beautiful. I think that the people feel very comfortable. The nurses are excellent... They have a full schedule of activities. They have walks to the park from the campus. They have music therapy. They also have church services."
Copperfield Hill Senior Living is located next to the picturesque Crystal Lake in Robbinsdale, northwest of Minneapolis. It's close to several health care facilities, including North Memorial Medical Center. The community boasts a secure, landscaped garden for residents to enjoy the outdoors. Inside, there's a small specialized memory care neighborhood, where residents with Alzheimer's and dementia are made to feel comfortable and safe. The memory care program treats residents individually, taking each resident's personal history, needs and interests into account. A range of enriching activities is offered and designed to be meaningful, considering residents' past hobbies. Activities include baking warm apple pies, to ignite memories from the sense of smell, and live music to reminisce. The staff is available 24/7 to offer assistance, and the culinary team provides three nutritious meals a day.
Visitors praise the great events, with one reviewer saying, "Copperfield Hill was very friendly and clean, and everything was really nice and good. There was a room that was open in the afternoon; it looked like a little bar, and you could bring in a beer. They could play cards in the afternoon, bring bands in, and a whole calendar of different things."
Elk Ridge Alzheimer’s Special Care Center boasts an ideal location as it’s just a block from M Health Fairview St. John’s Hospital and Maplewood Mall in Maplewood, a suburb north of Saint Paul. This JEA senior living facility has an accessible single-level layout, two landscaped courtyards, and a large secured backyard with patio areas, enabling residents to safely wander indoors and outdoors. Elk Ridge’s Meaningful Moments program honors the residents’ individual life stories for a personalized approach to care. Residents are served three nutritious meals daily, and all-day snacks are available. Regular activities include stretching exercises, sing-alongs, art therapy, daily devotionals and coffee socials. Families and friends are welcome to join in the activities, and there are supervised outings and scheduled social events. For the residents’ loved ones, Elk Ridge offers referral services, support groups and educational programs.
A resident’s daughter finds peace of mind in Elk Ridge Alzheimer’s Special Care Center during the COVID-19 pandemic. She shares, "My mom seems to like the food. I speak to my mom every day, and she really enjoys the painting, bingo and hand massages. It has been hard for her with no family contact, but she seems happy.”
Located in the heart of Vadnais Heights, Gables Pines is an award-winning community that provides assisted living, memory care and independent living community for seniors 55 and older. Rated as one of the best places to live, the community is not far from White Bear Lake, which has natural parks and a farmer's market. Through its Heartfelt CONNECTIONS Memory Care program, Gable Pines staff engages seniors in daily physical and cognitive activities that instill a sense of purpose and improve quality of life. Along with a packed calendar of planned activities and outings, residents can get 24/7 assistance with daily living tasks, such as grooming. On-site weekly housekeeping and laundry services keep spaces neat and organized, while a secured courtyard senior gives them plenty of space to socialize or have some quiet time.
Residents appreciate how helpful and friendly the staff is, and how the chef takes the time to listen to their needs. With so much to do, one states, "All in all, Gable Pines is the best senior living!"
Gracewood Advanced Assisted Living and Memory Care is located on the Mississippi River, southwest of Saint Paul, and it's close to medical centers and the Minneapolis VA Health Care System Hospital. The community provides a small, homelike atmosphere, with floor plans that are easy to navigate to minimize confusion. The dedicated memory care program offers personalized activities and amenities to reduce cognitive decline in seniors with Alzheimer's or dementia. Residents have access to 24/7 care and medication management as well as housekeeping and laundry. The community offers daily enriching activities to optimize physical and mental wellbeing, and residents receive regular visits from local churches, children's groups and music groups, keeping residents involved in the local community. The in-house chefs prepare homemade meals that residents can enjoy together in the dining area.
Family members praise the kind staff, with one reviewer saying, "The house manager and her staff are wonderful. The facility feels like a home and not a memory care facility. The staff cares for the residents and always make our family feel good about having our Mom live there. Thank you so much for your kindness and professionalism."
Meadow Ridge Senior Living is a comfortable and homelike senior living community. Seniors are assessed on cognitive, physical and social levels of functioning before being placed in the memory care unit. During the assessment, a personalized care plan is created that is tailored to the individual health and assistance needs of the resident. Any difficult behaviors such as wandering or aggression are noted in the care plan to make it easier for caregivers to assist the resident. Activities are designed to help preserve current cognitive function and stimulate the brain. Some of the activities offered include arts and crafts, pet therapy, music therapy and gentle exercise classes. Family members are encouraged to attend holiday celebrations to create memories with their loved ones. The memory wing is in a residential setting with controlled access for the safety of residents.
Family members appreciate the excellent staff and welcoming atmosphere, with one reviewer saying, "Our family chose meadow ridge over other senior living facilities for my grandmother due to the location, friendly staff, great food and a beautiful atmosphere. The staff loves my grandma and she has met a lot of nice residents."
New Perspective Highland Park is perfectly situated along Mississippi River Boulevard and right before Ford Bridge. This senior community is conveniently close to shopping centers on Ford Parkway, near Minnehaha Regional Park, and a short drive from the Twin Cities’ downtown amenities. Its landscaped grounds feature a central fountain, large front gazebo and secured rear patio with raised gardening beds and a barbecue area. The cafe and fireside library are in the lobby area. The fitness center and movie theater are on the second floor, together with an activity area with a computer station, grand piano, and a community kitchen. There’s also an indoor aviary and on-site chapel. All apartments have kitchenettes, and the monthly rent covers all utilities, including phone, cable and Wi-Fi. Residents are equipped with emergency pendants. In addition to on-site activities offered daily, transportation services are provided for community outings.
A resident’s daughter compliments the exceptional staff at New Perspective Highland Park. She writes, "They are a caring group who go out of their way to give excellent care to my mother and make every Covid-safe opportunity available for family members. My mother resides in the memory care wing where residents are engaged in meaningful activities tailored to their interests.”
New Perspective Senior Living - Eagan is located in a peaceful area surrounded by lakes and parks. A team of dedicated caregiving staff is available 24/7 to provide supervised care and compassionate support to residents in the memory care unit. A nurse is always on-call to assist with medical issues and emergencies. Regular wellness checks monitor the general health and well-being of residents. Daily social and wellness activities promote mental health and provide a sense of purpose for seniors in memory care. Examples of activities offered include supervised group outings, arts and crafts, cognitive games, musical entertainment and gentle fitness classes. Three chef-prepared meals are served each day using fresh ingredients, and meals are tailored to suit the requirements of residents. Transportation is provided to medical appointments and shopping trips. Weekly housekeeping and linen services are included.
Family members are impressed by the excellent staff and delicious food, with one reviewer saying, "The people and the area also were great. The staff was very helpful. ... We’ve eaten there and the food was really good. They don’t repeat every five or six weeks and if they don’t like what’s being served, they can pick from the menu."
Summit Hill Senior Living is an assisted living community that offers memory care services in an apartment-style setting. Located in central St. Paul, residents can visit nearby attractions such as Indian Mounds Regional Park, Pigs Eye Lake or the Mississippi River. The community provides three levels of memory support to appropriately handle residents' care needs, all of which include weekly visits to Summit Hill Senior Living's Health & Wellness Clinic. Nurse liaisons provide real-time updates about residents to health care professionals and family members. Residents participate in daily programs designed to keep their minds healthy and slow the growth of dementia. All of Summit Hill Senior Living's staff members go through annual dementia care training, which improves the community's standard of memory care.
Family members note that this community's warm staff members are responsible for its welcoming, homey atmosphere. One says, "My grandmother lives at Summit Hill Senior Living, and I love going to visit her. The staff is super nice to me, and the people who help take care of my grandmother really seem to care about her."
Sunlight Senior Living offers memory care as well as assisted living to seniors in St. Paul, Minnesota. Located conveniently in the heart of downtown, Sunlight Senior Living is near to shopping, dining and local parks. Memory care residents receive assistance 24/7 with daily living activities, and staff are trained to help address their unique needs. In addition, Sunlight Senior Living’s Director of Recreation plans activities that provide mentally, physically and emotionally engaging experiences to help slow mental decline and minimize anxiety. All rooms are private and include private baths with walk-in showers and emergency call bells. Laundry and linen services as well as housekeeping and daily trash removal are included. An enclosed, landscaped courtyard provides a secure space for relaxing outdoors.
Reviewers call Sunlight Senior Living an "amazing facility!” saying that "staff is caring and friendly, highly recommend!” Another reviewer writes that they "loved the ethnic diversity here and the small size of the residence.”
With lavish grounds and a short distance from the city, Sunrise of Edina offers the best of both worlds. The award-winning community, which has received a Bronze National Quality Award from the AHCA/NCAL, features 24/7 nursing support provided by an experienced team of RNs and caregivers. Residents also receive medical assistance from visiting physician groups, coupled with aid from the nearby Consultative Health & Medicine and Twin Cities Physicians. The community fosters relationships with additional clinics and rehabilitation centers to ensure all residents receive the highest level of care. Three balanced, chef-cooked meals are served, with entrees, snacks and drinks available to suit an array of dietary requirements. The social calendar includes a range of activities, from spiritual options to music therapy and arts and crafts, along with resident-sponsored clubs and trips into the local Edina community.
Residents and their families praise the compassionate staff. "We have been very happy with her care. The people there truly care for her - and we love how everyone (including other families) know each other," one family member says. "It truly is a community." Another relative adds, "My mom is not only well cared for, but loved!"
As the recipient of a Bronze National Quality Award by AHCA/NCAL, Sunrise of Golden Valley is an award-winning community that offers extensive support. Memory care residents inhabit Reminiscence, a secure, easily navigable neighborhood with mind-enriching programs and Life Enrichment Managers with Alzheimer’s Association-approved training. Caregivers, a nurse practitioner, physician visits and podiatry are all conveniently offered on-site 24/7. Care suites are available for those who need further support, and the community is just a short distance from multiple medical facilities. The staff chef serves fresh, made-from-scratch meals, with drinks and snacks offered in the bistro. Programming caters to residents' interests, from physical activities to education and art. Luxurious amenities include step-in tubs with hydro jets, a spacious living room with flat-screen TVs and outdoor gardens. With two highways nearby, Golden Valley recreation is easy to access.
Family members compliment the skilled caregivers and quality meals. "The staff have been kind, courteous and respectful at all times and attentive to my Dad's needs," one relative notes. "The menu and food have been wonderful and everyone does what they can to make your loved one feel at home and part of a big family."
Located just a short drive from the Twin Cities, Sunrise of Roseville is an award-winning community with easy access to the city. As the recipient of a Bronze National Quality Award from the AHCA/NCLA, the landscaped campus features a Reminiscence Neighborhood specifically for seniors living with memory loss, with specially trained staff available for 24/7 assistance. The skilled team includes in-house nurses and physicians, so residents can receive a high level of care in one convenient location, from bathing, grooming and dressing to medication and health management. With chef-prepared meals, residents benefit from numerous entree and snack choices. Activities range from exercise classes to spiritual and social options, with new programming each day. Indoor common areas, coupled with gardens and walking paths, offer ideal locations to relax. The community is close to multiple hospitals, including St. John's, Fairview and Unity.
Visiting family members praise the compassionate team. "The care mom has received is truly excellent," one resident's son says. "Everyone, from the PCAs, the nurses, the doctors, the kitchen staff, [and] the housekeepers to the receptionists, look after her with her special needs, not just because it's their jobs, but with real hearts. We can tell!!"
The Alton Memory Care is located in a charming residential area in the Highland Park neighborhood of Saint Paul, near Minneapolis VA Medical Center and the Minneapolis–Saint Paul International Airport. It’s also close to Sibley Plaza Shopping Center. Its three-level building has secured wraparound gardens with walking paths, raised gardening beds, covered sitting areas and a putting green. Other amenities include a conference room, salon, whirlpool spa, community kitchen and fireside lounges. In addition to the standard memory care units with wheelchair-accessible bathrooms, the Enhanced Care neighborhood has a higher staff ratio and accommodates up to nine residents with more complex needs. All residents may benefit from health care services by on-site registered nurses, licensed practical nurses, as well physician, dental and podiatry visits. The variety of activities offered at The Alton encourage residents to practice appropriate self-care, stay productive and enjoy leisure time. Families are offered support groups, education programs, resources and care conferences as needed.
A long-time resident’s daughter highly recommends The Alton and says, "... Although it has been a journey, she is now very happy there. I firmly believe that she receives the best care possible and in a very warm and inviting setting. The staff is fantastic at communicating with families, they are fantastic with Mom.”
The Commons on Marice carries a platinum service brand of care that promotes a well-rounded lifestyle for retirees. This pet-friendly senior community is conveniently located off Interstate 35E in Eagan, across from Central Park Commons and a short drive from Minnesota’s Twin Cities. The facility’s Pearls of Life memory care neighborhood features the Montessori Inspired Lifestyle program, which values the residents’ unique strengths through meaningful activities. Residents with Parkinson’s may take advantage of boxing classes led by Rock Steady Boxing-certified coaches. The community's landscaped grounds feature a large private pond that can be viewed from the patio area and screened-in balconies. Other deluxe amenities include a central courtyard, fitness center, club room and sunlit atrium with a grand piano. There are guest suites and a children’s activity area for visiting loved ones. The Commons on Marice also has an on-site Spiritual Care Director.
People are impressed by the exquisite beauty of The Commons on Marice. One reviewer writes, "Gives you a feeling of being in a 5-star hotel. Residents all seem well attended to and happy. The unit of the person we visited was spacious and cheerful. She is very happy with her surroundings and pleased with the meals and staff.”
Vernon Terrace of Edina is a memory care and assisted living community in Edina, MN. A team of licensed professionals trained in dementia care is on-site, offering various services, including personal care assistance, physical therapy and occupational therapy. Registered nurses at the community's wellness center provide weekly health checks. Seniors also have access to the gym, spa and treatment rooms. The community hosts several lounge areas, including a solarium with a grand piano and a fireside lounge. An outdoor patio and landscaped lawns provide ample space for nature-lovers to roam. The KOI pond adds a calming atmosphere to the community. Vernon Terrace's events calendar has several dementia-friendly activities that promote physical, mental and social health. Book club, coffee socials, movie nights and exercise classes are some popular activities.
Residents and their relatives praise the warm atmosphere at Vernon Terrace of Edina. One resident says, "Vernon Terrace is welcoming, inviting, and responsive to our needs. The food is good and the activities are varied with something for everyone. We have not needed to use the bus service but are thankful that it is there for future needs."
White Pine Advanced Assisted Living and Memory Care resides in the Twin Cities suburb of Mendota Heights, MN. Residents have views of trees and shrubs, and the grounds are groomed and ready for strolls, a picnic or just relaxing. The community serves people with memory and cognitive issues, such as Alzheimer's and dementia. Its homelike atmosphere combines comfort with care and a safe environment, and the staff assist with grooming, bathing and other personal activities. Specialized management of tube feedings and oxygen, colostomy and incontinence care are additional services. Residents' days are filled with activities that enhance confidence and improve engagement and social skills, and three nutritious meals and snacks are served daily. Rooms are equipped with emergency pull cords, cable TV and Wi-Fi. Housekeeping, laundry and maintenance services are available, and comfortable common rooms are favorite gathering places.
Staff and the quality of care rate high with residents and families. One family member said, "We are so impressed with the quality of care that is the standard at White Pine in Mendota Heights.”