We are a 16 bed assisted living residence located in a quiet and charming neighborhood in Bradenton, FL. We pride ourselves on providing a clean family home environment in a park like setting, with it’s own private lanai.
When married couple Carol Vojt and Eliseo Rojas set out to purchase an assisted living residence in the fall of 2021, their goal was to combine their love of real estate and the business world with their desire to take care of people.
They found what they were looking for when they purchased Cortez House in December 2021.
“We took real estate investing and rolled it forward into assisted living,” Carol said. “It gave us that element we were missing, which is helping people.”
Having worked in Corporate America for decades in New York (while living in New Jersey), the couple chose to relocate to the Sarasota-Bradenton area after Carol’s mom passed away. Already annual visitors to the area, the decision to make Florida their new home was a natural progression.
“We have lots of family here and knew eventually we would make Florida our home” Carol said. “We are extremely excited about being here and starting our new chapter!”
As new co-owners in the industry, Carol and Eliseo bought an existing ALF (Assisted Living Facility) and turned it into the Cortez House. The freshly renovated home is appreciated by many of the residents and caregivers that were there already-some of them for a dozen years or more.
“It’s been a thrill for everyone watching the positive transformation.” Carol shared.
Carol and Eliseo share different responsibilities based on their background and experience. Carol is more behind the scenes working on the business development and marketing, while Eliseo is more hands on and manages the staff and residents. Their common philosophy on life is to “lead with love, the rest will follow.“
“Our goal is for Cortez House to feel like home,” Carol said. “Owning an ALF residence is a labor of love. It requires a lot, but it’s worth it. Having a place that our residents and caregivers can be proud of gives us a lot of personal satisfaction, knowing we are doing the right thing!”
As a former CEO, Eliseo had initially started out with the intention of becoming a medical surgeon. Having worked in hospitals, he’s never forgotten how challenging and worthwhile that experience was.
“I always had that need to care for others,” he said. “It’s been super rewarding to leverage my business skills while also taking care of people.”
He added, “In all my years in the business world, I haven’t had the fulfillment that I’ve had here in less than six months’ time.”
Carol also finds it gratifying to use her nutrition background as a graduate of The Institute of Integrated Nutrition. As a former health coach, she enjoys sharing her passion and knowledge by creating healthy and interesting menus for the residents.
What Makes Cortez House Stand Out Above Other Assisted Living Homes?
“Many other places are called facilities, because they have more of an institutionalized feel to them,” Carol said. “That’s not who we are. We are a residence that provides the kind of focus they’re not going to get anywhere else.”
Though they haven’t been owners of Cortez House for long, the residents have grown attached to both Carol and Eliseo. Eliseo has been nicknamed “Mr. E” by the residents, and has even received a hug from a resident that doesn’t speak much, which meant the world to him.
Carol also can’t help but notice what a difference Cortez House has made in her own life. She enjoys taking walks with some of the residents to the park across the street.
“They all have different personalities. That’s what makes them special and makes me smile” Carol said. “I don’t have children of my own, but I look after the people here as though they were. It’s an awesome responsibility.”