Profile – October 2009

Napa Valley Marketplace Magazine “Profile” October 2009.


Rene di Rosa: Today At The Meadows

By Diana May

Rene di Rosa’s life in Napa Valley is much like the art he collects—colorful, original, and framed by natural beauty. Today, at age 90, these themes are as apparent in his life as they were in the 1960s, when he began building his legacy: di Rosa: Art Alive! in south Napa. Once his home, it is now a 217-acre nonprofit museum displaying his collection of 2,000 original works by 800 Northern California artists.

Rene says that if he were an artist, oil on canvas would be his medium. This is much like the man, whose passion for art could never be contained under glass and whose favorite vistas have always been wide-open spaces.

Rene’s first home in Napa was 460 country acres, which he and his late wife Veronica molded into a lucrative ranch for growing wine grapes and collecting Northern California art.

Today, Rene lives the same life, scaled to suit his 90 years. His windows still frame stunning views of nature, and he continues to collect art, displaying it on the walls of his spacious one-bedroom-plus-den Assisted Living apartment at the Meadows of Napa Valley.

Rene says he chose this 15-acre, multi-level retirement community for its “vastness and open space,” and because it is in the south Napa area he loves, just 15 minutes from di Rosa.

“My Meadows apartment is on a corner, with exceptional views of the wetland preserve,” says Rene. “I can watch ducks, geese, hawks, cranes, and egrets fly by, and several bird feeders attract hummingbirds to my patio year-round.”

The Meadows campus is beautiful, with 150 coastal redwood trees and views of the Napa hills. Paved walking paths weave through and around the entire campus, taking residents to various spa-like amenities, activities, and events.

Now that di Rosa is a nonprofit with its own management team, Rene is free to enjoy the art scene when he wishes. About once a week, he attends art shows or visits di Rosa to take in the art and surroundings. The freedom he now feels is due in part to the helpful daily “Assisted Living” services he receives at the Meadows.

“I particularly like that I no longer have to do the usual chores to sustain myself, like buying and cooking food or maintaining my home,” says Rene. “Everything is provided for me, including transportation and activities. Granted, I’m still a bit of a loaner, but last year I enjoyed showing off my Irish jig at the Meadows Talent Show.”

The Meadows is perfect for seniors like Rene who want to build a future in a community that can support them as they age. Recently renovated and expanded, the Meadows campus has Residential Living and Assisted Living apartments, some brand-new and very spacious with views, as well as Memory Care, Skilled Nursing Care, and Rehabilitation.

All are rented month-to-month with no costly entrance fees, and the tailored services help residents remain near family, friends, and favorite activities, even when their health needs change.

The Meadows is also a warm and friendly place to live. “In just two years the Meadows has become my home,” says Rene, “and I can’t imagine ever leaving.”

When seniors receive the care and services they need, their lives take on new meaning. For Rene, it has provided him the time and energy to continue building his lifelong legacy in the world of art.

“I believe in what I’m doing and I believe in the strength of art in Napa/Sonoma.”

To learn more about the Meadows, call (707) 257-7885.


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