Best places to retire in Alberta

The Wild Rose Country's most retirement-friendly towns and cities



Are you Alberta-bound in retirement? Or are you an older Albertan looking for a smaller town to settle into? We look at a number of places in the province that are ideal for living, based on the investment, the quality of life there, and acclaim from residents themselves. Start dreaming retirement ideas here, or find confirmation that the place you have in mind is the best possible choice.

We pull together information from a variety of sources, as well as our own expertise based on over 15 years of looking closely at Canadian retirement communities.

> Find the best retirement homes in Alberta

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  1. Calgary, AB

    Calgary is the jewel of Alberta. It doesn't really get its due in some list from some sources1 because some smaller towns in the province have lower unemployment or a higher median household income — factors you probably care less about when you're retired. And it's been ranked by The Economist2 as the 5th most livable in the city. If you want to be near family, near the best health care, in the best overall city in the province, Calgary's your choice.

    Within the city of Calgary there are several exceptional areas and neighbourhoods. Two of the cleaner, friendlier, more retirement-friendly neighbourhoods in the city are Rocky Ridge and the Christie Park- Signal Hill area. These are both suitably close to the outskirts, with fresh mountain air in from the west, combined with the suburban quietude and peace you crave. Money, as they say, isn't everything, and at Comfort Life we look at the overall comfort you will find in retirement, instead of the hard statistics MoneySense might look at. And we know from talking to people in neighbourhoods like Rocky Ridge that life here is wonderfully comfortable.

    Leo and Maxine Nugent moved into a retirement community here and they love the fact they are "all of a sudden free of the things tying [them] down." They love the environment in the Rocky Ridge area of Calgary. Says Leo, "We walk a mile or so every day. We can see the mountains, and we breathe that clean mountain air."

    When you choose a place to retire, you want to think ahead to how you will feel once you settle there. And in the Rocky Ridge neighbourhood of Calgary, Leo and Maxine say that after they made the move, they wondered, "Why didn't we do it five or ten years ago." If you move to a Calgary neighbourhood that makes you regret not moving there earlier, you know you've made the right choice. "Only yesterday," says Leo, "we were saying how right we were to come here."

    Check out a full list of Calgary retirement communities.

  2. Lloydminster, AB

    Lloydminster is a solid, conservative town, where people take hard work and self-discipline seriously. Given that the town was created as an attempt at a temperate utopia defined by fidelity and sobriety, you can still feel those roots here. It's a "nice place to live." You may not always feel safe in some other cities, but Gaye is one older person who found a lovely home near the center of town. She has all she needs, "easy access to shopping, medical facilities and pathways to recreational activities."

    Find a great place to retire in Lloydminster.

  3. Canmore, AB

    Canmore, just 20 kilometers outside of Banff, and a little over an hour outside of Calgary was listed as the 7th best place to live in Canada by MoneySense1, in 2018. A high average net household worth in a small town setting, with a number of other great qualities (for example, low unemployment, low property taxes, and a decreasing crime rate that is already low) make this an attractive place to live. For those who are retirement age, though, there are different considerations. Canmore is in the mountains, a little removed from major centres and there is a greater availability of high quality health care, in places like Calgary.

    Canmore is also home to one of the most spectacular retirement communities outside of Calgary. Amelia moved here from out of the area, to be closer to family. For her, it's all about the friends she's made. "You socialize here, every day, it's so easy. I used to eat alone, and within ten minutes your breakfast is over. Now it’s an hour and a half, and I’m still having breakfast! Second cup of coffee … third cup of coffee because you’re surrounded by people your own age. It’s so healthy!"

    Find top places to retire in Canmore.

  4. Edmonton

    Edmonton is the 68th highest rated place to live in Canada, according to MoneySense1. As a major centre, it offers everything you need in terms of conveniences and entertainment. Of course, some of those things are less important in retirement but the high quality of health care services available in the city of Edmonton also make it attractive for those who are older. Progressive-minded Edmonton is home to several stellar new retirement communities that incorporate all that's great about contemporary retirement living.

    Find the best places to retire in Edmonton.

  5. Strathcona County, AB

    Strathcona County, just east of Edmonton, is ranked #59 on the overall list of best places to live in Canada, by MoneySense, in 20181. As with a number of Alberta communities, it's highly rated for its low unemployment and high median household income. Those factors, though, may be less important to people living in retirement. That said, Strathcona County offers much for people later in life who may be more comfortable with a slower pace and quieter lifestyle. There is Sherwood Park surrounded by large rural areas and smaller hamlets in the county, all perfect places for those looking for peaceful digs. There are great things to do in Strathcona itself (like taking in some great shows at Festival Place) but there is also the proximity to Edmonton.

    Find top places to retire in Strathcona County.

  6. St. Albert, AB

    St. Albert is selected by MoneySense as the fifth best place to live in Alberta, and 19th overall in Canada1. Why is St. Albert so highly rated? It's a small town where people have a high income and high average net worth. Other factors that make this ideal are great access to health care and a low crime rate. "The Botanical Arts City," just northwest of Edmonton, is also highly rated for its low rate of unemployment. St. Albert is just a beautiful spot to settle into retirement, and has a moderate population just above 60,000. If you are looking for a peaceful town3 close to the attractions and options available in a major center (while removed from the noise and busyness at the same time), St. Albert is indeed a great place to retire.

    There are a number of active adult lifestyle communities near here.

  7. Claresholme, Alberta

    You might not find it on any other list of best places, because Claresholme is one of the best kept secrets in Alberta. This small town (population 3,780 and counting!) features one of the most progressive-minded retirement villages in the country. It consists entirely of bungalows, ideally designed for people who think life is better without stairs to climb. It’s "top notch," brags one resident.

    Small towns like this are an ideal retirement destination for people from Calgary and Edmonton, who can easily use the equity from homes to purchase a home here that’s ideally suited to who they are now. Here, life is simpler, land is cheaper, and the living is easier. Claresholme also stands out for an ideally humid continental climate, while winter’s chinook winds can suddenly raise the temperature to well above freezing. Visit soon, and you could find yourself agreeing wholeheartedly with the town’s motto, "now you’re living … now you’re home."

    Find a great place to retire in Claresholm.


Home care
As you look ahead, consider how home care services will help you age in place.

No one can say for sure what is the best place to retire for you. Most people have their own ideas about what makes an ideal place to live and those values have very little to do with money. The need to be close to family may supersede all other considerations when it comes to deciding on a place to retire. That said, it’s nice to know that the place you have in mind is considered a good place to live. And you can make any place you live the best place for you, by bringing out what is great in your environment and focusing on the positives that you see. In any case, we say happy searching… and happy retiring!

Sources and further resources

1moneysense.ca/../canadas-best-places-to-live-25-2018/. MoneySense did not release figures for 2019.
2"The Economist ranks Calgary as the 5th most livable city in the world." dailyhive.com/../the-economist-calgary-5th-most-livable-city-in-the-world
3 business.financialpost.com/../small-towns-can-offer-big-savings-for-retirees: The Financial Post and others list the best places to retire in Canada, based on other criteria.
4 theglobeandmail.com/…/how-moving-to-a-small-town-can-fund-your-retirement/. This story's cautionary take is based on one person's experience moving from Toronto to a smaller town in Ontario.

The best retirement homes in Alberta, as chosen by Comfort Life

Country Cottage

Country Cottage

75 Cranford Way, Sherwood Park, Alberta, T8H 2B9
At Optima Living, we offer a tailored approach where the resident is the focus of all of our endeavours and we strive to fulfil all our residents’ needs so that they can live their best possible life!
Sweetgrass

Sweetgrass

105 6th Avenue NE, Slave Lake, Alberta, T0G 2A2
At Sweetgrass, we are dedicated to promoting maximum independence, choice, and dignity for each resident and encourage the involvement of family, neighbours and friends.
Prince of Peace

Prince of Peace

285030 Luther Rose Blvd NE, Calgary, Alberta, T1X 1M9
Prince of Peace a variety of suites styles with kitchenettes and incredible mountain views. It's the perfect residence for seniors who are active, require some assistance, or have memory care needs.
The Lodge at Valley Ridge

The Lodge at Valley Ridge

11479 Valley Ridge Drive NW, Calgary, Alberta, T3B5V5
At The Lodge at Valley Ridge, you'll enjoy spacious suites, impressive cuisine, and exceptional services. We have recently renovated. We welcome the opportunity to show you our great community.
Trinity Lodge

Trinity Lodge

1111 Glenmore Trail SW, Calgary, Alberta, T2V 4C9
Trinity Lodge Retirement Residence combines the elegance & style of a fine traditional hotel, with the security & warmth associated with senior living. Homecare staff is available 24/7 to give you support when needed.
Golden Sands

Golden Sands

9210 91 Avenue, P.O. Box 1380, Lac La Biche, Alberta, T0A 2C0
Lake Bonavista Village

Lake Bonavista Village

11800 Lake Fraser Drive SE, Calgary, Alberta, T2J7G8
Lake Bonavista Village Retirement Residence is the perfect place for seniors to retire. You can choose from a variety of suite sizes in the main building or one of our unique cottages.
Dr. James Hemstock

Dr. James Hemstock

4202 54 Ave, Lloydminster, Alberta, T9V 2Z3
At Dr. Hemstock Residence & Hearthstone Place, our highly-skilled group of health care professionals and qualified staff are here to do whatever we can to ensure that all your needs are taken care of.
Wild Rose

Wild Rose

9612 - 172nd Street NW, Edmonton, Alberta, T5T 6C7
At Optima Living, we offer a tailored approach where the resident is the focus of all of our endeavours and we strive to fulfil all our residents’ needs so that they can live their best possible life!
Evanston Summit

Evanston Summit

150 Evanspark Manor NW, Calgary, Alberta, T3P 0N4
A Catholic non-profit residence focusing on providing a lifestyle for independent seniors who appreciate the opportunity to live stress-free, with like-minded, active older adults.
Cottonwood Village

Cottonwood Village

4224 8th Street West, P.O. Box 2259, Claresholm, Alberta, T0L 0T0
Cottonwood Village was thoughtfully designed to deliver the best lifestyle rural Alberta has to offer. Located in Claresholm in the heart of the foothills. Let Us Welcome You Home
Cambridge Manor

Cambridge Manor

253 Smith St NW, Calgary, Alberta, T3B 6K1
Renowned for award winning care and a ‘people-first’ approach to wellness. Enjoy a rich & full life with the comfort & peace of mind of a true aging-in-place experience.
River Ridge Seniors Village

River Ridge Seniors Village

#4 River Ridge Dr. N.W., Medicine Hat, Alberta, T1A 8V1
A premier Park Place residence in the heart of Medicine Hat offering independent living, supportive living, and long term care options. With spectacular views and services, River Ridge is a warm place to call home.
Boardwalk Retirement Community

Boardwalk Retirement Community

3520 31 St. NW, Calgary, Alberta, T2L 2A5
Welcome to the BRC, a beautiful assisted living facility located in the heart of Calgary's NW. Enjoy the peace of mind knowing that your loved ones are safe and cared for with our friendly and passionate staff.
The Manor Villages StayWell Manor

The Manor Villages StayWell Manor

174 Ypres Green SW, Calgary, Alberta, T2T 6M2
Staywell Manor Village offers elegant retirement living in the heart of Calgary. Whether you are looking for independent living, assisted living or memory care, we have lifestyle options to meet your needs.
The Wellington Retirement Residence

The Wellington Retirement Residence

1595 Southview Drive SE, Medicine Hat, Alberta, T1B 0A1
As a premier Park Place multi-level care residence, The Wellington provides Independent and Supportive Living options for seniors seeking to maintain your independence while enjoying access and services to amenities.
Emerald Gardens Retirement Residence

Emerald Gardens Retirement Residence

10402-111 Street, Grande Prairie, Alberta, T8V 8G4
A premier retirement community located in the heart of Grande Prairie, Alberta focused on independent living. Emerald Gardens provides quality services to enhance your current lifestyle.
Aster Gardens

Aster Gardens

7 Brower Drive, Sherwood Park, Alberta, T8H 1Y7
Aster Gardens, an Optima Living community, opening March 2021, is Sherwood Park’s newest residence that will transform the way seniors live. Let us welcome you home.
Prominence Way Retirement Community by Signature

Prominence Way Retirement Community by Signature

905 Prominence Way SW, Calgary, Alberta, T3H 6A8
Experience vibrant senior’s living at Prominence Way with a world of choices, beautiful architecture, gourmet dining, caring people, nursing staff and a comprehensive program of activities and services.
Chartwell Eau Claire Care Residence

Chartwell Eau Claire Care Residence

301 7th Street SW, Calgary, Alberta, T2P 1Y6
A safe and rewarding lifestyle in a Calgary seniors housing community you're proud to call home.
Chartwell Fountains of Mission Retirement Residence

Chartwell Fountains of Mission Retirement Residence

222 25th Avenue South West, Calgary, Alberta, T2S 3E9
A safe and rewarding lifestyle in a Calgary seniors housing community you're proud to call home.
Chartwell Colonel Belcher Retirement Residence

Chartwell Colonel Belcher Retirement Residence

1945 Veteran's Way NW, Calgary, Alberta, T3B 5Y7
A safe and rewarding lifestyle in a Calgary seniors housing community you're proud to call home.
Chartwell Royal Park Retirement Residence

Chartwell Royal Park Retirement Residence

4315 Richardson Road SW, Calgary, Alberta, T3E 7J7
A safe and rewarding lifestyle in a Calgary seniors housing community you're proud to call home.
Chartwell Harbours Retirement Residence

Chartwell Harbours Retirement Residence

20 Country Village Cove NE, Calgary, Alberta, T3K 5T9
A safe and rewarding lifestyle in a Calgary seniors housing community you're proud to call home.



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