Ross Cortese's “Leisure World” Concept

Judith Ann Trolander

in From Sun Cities to the Villages

Published by University Press of Florida

Published in print May 2011 | ISBN: 9780813036045
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780813038988 | DOI:
Ross Cortese's “Leisure World” Concept

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Webb's best-known and most innovative competitor in active adult communities was Ross Cortese, with his Leisure World communities, which are the subject of this chapter. Cortese was an innovator, not just an imitator of Del Webb. Certainly the two had a lot in common. They were aware of and somewhat influenced by each other. However, Cortese seems to have arrived at his concept of the ideal age-restricted, active adult community on his own. In California, home of the first two Leisure Worlds, Cortese became better known than Del Webb. And unlike Webb in the 1960s, Cortese built retirement communities on the East Coast. While his Leisure Worlds reinforced the “active retirement” image that Webb was promoting, Cortese spotted some of Webb's mistakes and avoided them.

Keywords: Ross Cortese; Leisure World communities; Del Webb; California; East Coast

Chapter.  14434 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Social and Cultural History

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