Sunrise Assisted Living Community Opens on Battery Lane in Bethesda

Virginia-based company now operates 16 communities in Maryland


Sunrise of Bethesda resident Janet Didinsky cuts the ribbon at the community during Thursday's celebration.

Sunrise Senior Living

Sunrise Senior Living this month debuted communities in Bethesda and Chevy Chase this month, with fresh designs the company believes will appeal to local residents.

The Virginia-based company Thursday celebrated a ribbon-cutting at the Bethesda center, marking the completion of a lengthy renovation project. Sunrise several years ago acquired the 4925 Battery Lane building where another senior living community had closed in 2015.

Carla Shipley, Sunrise associate director of operations, said the new Bethesda center exemplifies “urban sophistication.”

The nine-level center can accommodate as many as 109 residents, but it’s starting with about 20 “founders,” people who had committed to moving in before the ribbon had even been cut.

The common areas are designed to encourage residents to gather with each other and with their loved ones, Sunrise representatives said.

The first floor has a private dining area where families can hold birthday parties or get-togethers. And residents can watch movies together in the center's theater space or practice yoga in the fitness room.

Sunrise also draws on technology to provide high-quality care, said Lisa Oursler, Sunrise regional director of operations.

Servers in the community’s dining room carry tablets that store residents’ dietary information to ensure safe meal service. And Sunrise uses electronic health records so each resident's care information is personalized and readily available to health providers.

Activities and programming, from making baked goods for local firefighters to creating art for hospital patients, are also a central part of life at Sunrise, Shipley explained.

“The goal is giving the residents meaning every day for getting up,” she said.

In addition to assisted living housing, the center has three levels dedicated to memory care.

Exterior of Sunrise of Bethesda, left, and the community's theater room. Credit: Sunrise.

Speakers during the ribbon-cutting noted that the need for senior housing and memory care is increasing; people over the age of 60 are expected to make up more than a quarter of Maryland’s population by 2030.

Ginanne Italiano, CEO and President of the Greater Bethesda Chamber of Commerce, welcomed Sunrise to the area.

“Bethesda is a warm community,” she said. “You’ll get to know people around here.”

Sunrise, based in Virginia, runs more than 320 communities across four countries, with 16 located in Maryland.

Sunrise of Chevy Chase is at 2201 Colston Drive, and the company also runs centers in Friendship Heights and North Bethesda.

Bethany Rodgers can be reached at

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