NYC group to buy River Ridge

AMSTERDAM – A New York City group is buying the River Ridge Living Center, a former Montgomery County-operated infirmary currently owned by husband and wife Paul and Susanne Guttenberg.

“I want to retire,” Susanne Guttenberg said. “I’ve been in this business for 25 years and I am ready to retire. When we took over in 2007 we did a lot of work in this place, not only to bring it up physically, but to bring it up culturally – and I have achieved my final goal in this industry.”

The new owners from New York City formed a company called River Ridge Operating LLC.

According to the state Department of Health’s Public Health and Health Planning Council meeting documents from Oct. 3, the co-operators are Ruth Hirsch, Benjamin Einhorn, Michael Braunstein and Edward Braunstein. The group has been in the nursing home industry, according to Susanne, and they own facilities in New Jersey and Connecticut.

The buyers could not be reached for comment.

“They’re very family-oriented and they know how important our staff is to us and of course our reputation,” she said. “They have indicated that they have no interest in changing anything here because everything works very well. They know that they bought a very fine, functioning facility and they have assured us that they will have the respect for our staff that we have.”

River Ridge Operating LLC will acquire the operating assets for $1.8 million. The documents said the real property will be purchased for $7.2 million.

Montgomery County sold the 120-bed Montgomery Meadows Residential?Health?Care Facility on Dec. 28, 2006, for $645,592. That was less than half its assessed value of $1.4 million. At the time, supervisors said the county subsidy needed to keep the nursing home operational in 2007 would have been about $2 million.

The company will take over toward the beginning of next year, according to Susanne.

She said her husband will continue working on his planned-assisted living facility and independent senior living community, which will be adjacent from the existing center on Sandy Drive.

The state approved the project in late 2012. It will include a three-story assisted living center with 120 beds.

River Ridge Operating also has shown interest in partnering with Paul for the $25 million construction of his project, according to Susanne.

“Right now [the project is] in the process of getting through with planning with the city of Amsterdam. It has been a long, arduous process,” she said.