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Our 5 Picks for the Best Assisted Living in New Zealand After Dozens of Centre Tours

When my aunt turned 75, she decided it was time to trade her sprawling garden for a more manageable plot of petunias and the occasional gin-fueled bingo night. So, she had the whole family looking for the perfect assisted living facility in New Zealand.

A few eyebrow-raising encounters and one unforgettable tour where Aunt Maude got stuck in a stair lift (yes, there were photos) opened my eyes to how crucial it is to find a place that feels like home for this sort of thing. Not all assisted living facilities are made equal!

Luckily, I’ve since grabbed recommendations from several others I trust. I also had some help from the rest of the fantastic Top Reviews team in checking out each living-assisted facility I shortlisted firsthand.

In any case, here’s our list of the best assisted living facilities in New Zealand if one of your loved ones is making this transition too. Don’t worry, the ones we picked aren’t just sorted in every practical way – they also have the warmth you’d want for loved ones!

How much does assisted living in New Zealand cost?

Expect to spend at least 1,300 NZD per week for assisted living in New Zealand, which covers basic accommodation and care. This cost is just an estimate and can increase significantly depending on the location, level of care required, and type of facility chosen. 

How We Chose

Quality of Care: We scrutinised each facility’s healthcare services, ensuring personalised and compassionate care is at the forefront. This meant evaluating staff qualifications, the availability of medical services, and the attentiveness and kindness of the carers.
Facilities and Amenities: From beautifully landscaped gardens to fully-equipped gyms, we assessed the range of amenities offered. Our top picks go beyond the basics with features that elevate the daily living experience, such as swimming pools, art studios, and gourmet dining options.
Resident Satisfaction: We engaged directly with residents and their families to get first-hand accounts of their experiences. Happiness indexes, complaints, and compliments all played crucial roles in our decision-making process, ensuring the chosen facilities are places where residents aren’t just living—they’re thriving.
Community Activities and Social Engagement: We looked at the social calendars of each facility. Keeping busy with meaningful activities is key to staying happy and healthy as one ages. Our favourites boast an impressive variety of social events, hobby groups, and outings that cater to a wide range of interests.

1. Rosewood Lifecare

ADDRESS288 Woodham Road, Linwood, North Linwood 8062, New Zealand


Rosewood Lifecare has many care services, like respite care and dementia care, making it easy to adjust care plans as your loved one’s needs change.

One big plus is having hospital-level care right on-site, so there’s no need to worry about stressful moves. There’s no need to look for the closest mall—they’ve got hairdressers, physiotherapy, and more.

And the staff at Rosewood? Super-friendly and really attentive, based on our visit. Residents also told us the staff treats them like family, always ready for a chat and making sure they’re comfortable. 

The rooms are fresh and well-kept (at least the ones we saw), and there’s always a lively game of bingo or board games going on to keep everyone busy and active. 

However, sometimes communication about residents’ health apparently isn’t always spot-on, which leaves some families feeling a bit out of the loop. Some residents also mentioned a bit of waiting for assistance, which can be a tad frustrating.


  • Easy to adjust care plans
  • Hospital-level care on-site
  • Friendly & attentive staff
  • Lots of activities


  • Some residents’ families felt out of the loop
  • Occasional wait times for assistance

Customer reviews

It has a comfortable domestic feel – like being in your own house

“Caring for my mum with dementia over several years became too much for me six months ago and I had to relocate her to hospital level rest home care. All I can say is thank goodness we were able to get her into Rosewood for her care to continue. While she was able to understand I told her I would always keep her close to her home and her beloved cats  and Rosewood is close to her home of forty years. Her last six months have been very restful and non stressing for her with her needs well met by a nice, professional staff. Mum got what she wanted and was happy with her lot – was ok with being there and felt at home since we lived nearby. It felt quite homely when the staff would fold washing and sit in the lounge with residents like a large family – something you’d normally expect in someone’s own home and that’s what is good about Rosewood. It has a comfortable domestic feel – like being in your own house. I received phone calls from staff if something wasn’t right and was quite thankful to be in mum’s loop of care. The staff kept mum maintained with a little family input on nails and so on and made sure there was food she would eat, and as we all know, feeding a poor soul who has dementia can be excruciating for the carer but mum never went without as they fed her when needed. For all this wonderful care and attention I say – Thank you to the lovely, friendly and professional staff at Rosewood Rest Home for caring for my mum so well and helping her live out her final days with dignity.”

This is one of the very best in the country

“This is one of the very best in the country. The staff are amazing the love and care they gave to my dad was above and beyond the call of duty.  My dad was one of the ones that past with covid. My heart goes to the staff as they lost people they care for and loved too. I would highly recommend Rosewood to all. Staff and management thank you all for taking such great care of my dad. You will always have a special place in my heart for your kindness to him. Thank you.”

2. Summerset on Cavendish

ADDRESS147 Cavendish Road, Casebrook, Christchurch 8051, New Zealand
CONTACT DETAILS+64 3 741 2330

Summerset on Cavendish might be worth checking out if you value friendly staff, tons of facilities, and access to one of the leading memory care centres in New Zealand. 

All the residents we spoke to had nothing but good things to say about their friendliness and kindness, which is obviously a plus. Several even commented on the carers’ “genuine and helpful” nature. 

From our tour of the place itself, we also thought it pretty luxurious. There’s an indoor pool and even a fully stocked bar! 

The residents we interviewed also enjoy the extensive activities and for those with a green thumb, you can manage your own garden.

However, some of the people we interviewed had concerns about care quality, especially for those with mobility issues. Others also gave us a fair warning that communication with management could sometimes be a bit rude and unresponsive.


  • Friendly staff 
  • Lots of facilities (pool, bar, etc.)
  • Top memory care
  • Can have personal garden 


  • Concerns about care quality for the less mobile
  • Occasional management communication issues

Customer Reviews

 It is a safe choice for the elderly 

” This is one of the newest retirement village in Christchurch that is located in Casebrook suburb. It is a well designed gated community retirement village and is one of three belonging to Summerset Group in Christchurch. The main complex consists of a hospital level care with other levels of care such as independent living (serviced apartments) and other facilities (refer to their website). There are also villas, cottages and townhouses to choose from. It is a safe choice for the elderly folks as this site is fully fenced with control entry for safety reasons.” 

Like being in a hotel 

“Like being in a hotel. Staff are fantastic. So glad my dad is living there. I know he is looked after and has friends to talk to every day.”

3. George Manning Lifecare & Village

ADDRESS1 Hennessy Place, Spreydon, Christchurch 8024, New Zealand
CONTACT DETAILS+64 3 338 9164


George Manning Lifecare & Village has everything from physio to podiatry—even a scooter bay and SKY TV! They also have fun activities like indoor bowls and quizzes.

The staff is incredibly caring, and many residents said they love the warm, welcoming atmosphere. The location is also perfect, close to Barrington Mall for easy shopping. Plus, the beautiful gardens add a peaceful touch.

However, some residents told us they found the meal options a bit repetitive and wished for more variety, especially those with dietary needs. That’s definitely worth mentioning if your loved one is big on cuisine!

And, while those with shared rooms enjoy a strong sense of community, some we interviewed said that privacy could be an issue in them, for obvious reasons.


  • Many amenities and activities
  • Caring staff, welcoming atmosphere
  • Convenient location, beautiful gardens


  • Slightly repetitive cuisine
  • Limited privacy in shared rooms

Customer Reviews

Our family is grateful for the care and kindness shown to Mum

“Our mother was unsure about moving into a Village environment, fiercely independent she had doubts that this was what she wanted.  Our meeting with the Sales Co-Ordinator was relaxed and provided all the information Mum needed.  She was immediately put at ease and any doubts she had were quickly forgotten.  From the legal side of the purchase to the physical shift everything was done with ease and according to plan.  The Village were up front about where things were at and kept Mum well informed as to refurbishment.  Mum is now settling into Village life and enjoying the interaction with staff and other village residents.  Our family is grateful for the care and kindness shown to Mum in what was quite a stressful time and so thankful she has found a place where she is happy and receives the level of care she currently needs.

The Village residents are friendly and welcoming and the surroundings are pleasant

“We have been here for just over 6 months now and have settled in well. The Village is run very well – overseen by Gail (Facility Manager) who is always available to discuss any ideas or queries. Sharryn Pidgeon was our initial contact when viewing the Village and she was very helpful in organising the unit we chose and answering our many questions prior to purchasing.

The Village residents are friendly and welcoming and the surroundings are pleasant with well tended colourful gardens.”

4. Bert Sutcliffe Retirement Village

ADDRESS2 Rangatira Road, Birkenhead, Auckland 0626, New Zealand
CONTACT DETAILS+64 9 482 1777


Want quality assisted living in NZ with a view? Bert Sutcliffe Retirement Village might just be your spot. 

This place has it all: stunning views of Kauri Point, a heated indoor pool, a movie theatre… the list goes on! They even have a 4-year certification from the Ministry of Health, so you know your loved ones are in good hands.

But word on the village’s streets is that the activities are a bit more geared towards the ladies, leaving some of the fellas feeling a bit left out. And the price tag? Let’s just say it’s made some families’ wallets cry.

Overall, though, Bert Sutcliffe Retirement Village offers a pretty sweet deal for those looking for a comfortable and engaging assisted living facility. Just keep the caveats we mentioned in mind.


  • Great views of Kauri Point
  • Many amenities
  • Certified Ministry of Health care 


  • Expensive
  • Not many activities for men

Customer Reviews

Loving the swimming pool and spa!

We recently moved into this village and are really enjoying it so far. Residents and staff are very friendly and welcoming. Lots of activities and groups to join. Loving the swimming pool and spa!

Stylish, great amenities and lovely views 

A lovely new rest home! Stylish, great amenities (billiards room, movie room, library, hairdresser/ beauty therapist and cafe) and lovely views from the majority of apartments. Close to bus routes, supermarkets and shopping centres.

5. The Sands Care Centre and Village

ADDRESS9 Bayview Road, Browns Bay, Auckland 0630, New Zealand
CONTACT DETAILS+64 9 475 0061

OPERATING HOURSMonday to Sunday - 8 AM to 5 PM

The Sands Care Centre and Village is a real gem by the sea. Stunning ocean views, easy access to local shops, and a quick trip into town—that’s what makes this place special. 

It’s a modern haven with both rest-home and hospital-level care, perfect for those who need a little extra support. The staff providing that support are particularly good, from what we saw and heard.

In our interviews, it was clear that the centre’s staff have affected the lives of residents. We observed firsthand how they go above and beyond, making sure residents are well cared for and feel right at home. 

However, some families we interviewed mentioned difficulties reaching the facility after hours and wished for clearer communication about end-of-life care options.


  • Beautiful beachfront location 
  • Modern facilities
  • Caring staff


  • Limited after-hours contact
  • Unclear on end-of-life care 

Customer Reviews

The Sands is such a great place

“The Sands is such a great place and following some parking corns for high top wheelchair vans they are more than happy to help out.  Great work.”

Medical care is excellent

“Rest Home is wonderful! The staff are well trained and take great care of the elderly.

Medical care is also excellent. Congratulations on your affection and dedication to the people who live there!”