Q&A With Andy Coelho, Sunrise’s SVP of Facilities, Design & Development

Sunrise Senior Living  |  June 30, 2014

Meet Andy Coelho, Sunrise’s SVP of Facilities and Design. Andy’s passion for the Sunrise mission, and commitment to our community designs and energy star certification programs has been integral to many of our company’s successes. Read about Andy’s background, his leadership style, and his thoughts on Sunrise and our new developments.

Q: What is your career background and how did you find your way to Sunrise?

A: I’m a registered architect and worked at a firm that designed the Sunrise mansion prototype. Through that process, what drew me to Sunrise was the complexity and design challenges of the buildings. From an architectural standpoint, there’s a lot going on – the buildings must look and feel residential, while at the same time meet complex code requirements. I was excited when I was offered the opportunity to come work directly for Sunrise.

I recently celebrated my 10-year anniversary with Sunrise and like to say that, while it is the architecture of the communities that grabbed me, it is the Sunrise mission that has kept me here. Now I’m hooked on Sunrise Senior Living.

Q: Describe Sunrise in six words or less.

A: Great spaces allow for great care.

Q: What was your first impression of a Sunrise community?

A: Comfortable, warm and cozy.

Q: How would you describe your leadership role?

A: I’m a nice guy rather than authoritarian. My team is made up of folks with strong internal motivation and that’s why I can trust them.

Q: When Burlingame opens next summer, what features will it have?

A: I’m excited that the community is being built to allow for adaptable spaces to support Sunrise’s range of programming. As an example, the need for memory care is increasing, and the design will allow for greater flexibility to serve all types of care.

We’ve also taken great care to ensure the community will feature décor that is consistent with the Burlingame neighborhood’s style and architecture. This includes landscaping specific to the region, and warm interior colors, like beige and gold. Electronic health records and Wi-Fi are planned, too.

Q: Why do you think residents and their families choose Sunrise?

A: Our beautiful buildings and prime locations may draw people in, but it’s our care and team members that are the reason people ultimately choose Sunrise.

Q: What is different about today’s senior living communities than those from 10, 20 years ago?

A: We’ve had to accommodate for more memory care over the years. This means taking measures to keep residents safe while maintain their dignity. Also, the interior design has progressed to be more responsive to the current aesthetic.

Q: Finish this sentence: Sunrise is special because…

A: of the communities’ beautiful spaces and caring team members.

Q: What do you like to do for fun?

A: I enjoy spending time with my wife and two young sons, watching TV and movies, traveling and exercising. I recently bought a new camera and am enjoying playing around with it. 

Q: Pick your favorite invention of the last 200 years.

A: The airplane allows us to go places and experience new things. Cameras are great so you can capture images and inspiration for your next design project.