Fredericka Manor Lily Pond Has Been a Community Icon for Decades

Many senior living communities have signature features, but at Fredericka Manor, one of Chula Vista’s most revered senior living destinations, nothing is more impressive than the iconic lily pond that has graced the landscape and delighted residents for decades.

A photo is worth a thousand words.

Although Fredericka Manor opened in 1908, the original lily pond was built into the natural landscape in 1967, the same year the community’s adjacent Ashbury Towers first welcomed residents and offered them breathtaking views of San Diego’s South Bay. The pond was an instant hit. It offers residents the perfect place to people watch, exercise, enjoy activities, meditate or just relish the sights and sounds of its gentle waterfall. The resident dining room enjoys a bird’s eye view of the pond, which many  residents have exquisitely captured in oil, watercolor and other mediums.

“It was the vision of architectural firm Neptune and Associates to install the pond in the late 60s,” said current Executive Director Craig Sumner, who began his career at Fredericka more than 25 years ago as a landscaper. “I think it was their way to create a distinctive landmark here and set us apart from other senior living communities. The lily pond has always been a resident favorite. It’s definitely a highlight of the community.”

The pond not only attracts residents but wildlife as well, like ducks, Snowy Egrets, Blue Heron and turtles. It is also home to Koi and in its early days, bass and carp.

It even charmed famed San Diego aquatic plant enthusiast Walter Pagels, who donated various varieties of water lilies he collected from around the world, including the variety named for him by the International Waterlily and Water Gardening Society. It is a similar white lily that graces the Fredericka Manor logo today.

In 2021, the pond received a facelift making it more water conservation efficient and structurally sound, which will allow it to delight the community for decades to come. Designers added a babbling brook between the upper and lower portions and planted 125 species of drought tolerant plants, trees and shrubs in and around the pond including milk weed and other plants that attract butterflies. Landscapers brought in rocks and small boulders from Alpine, a small town in the Cuyamaca Mountains of San Diego County.

An outdoor dining and social area and pergola are being added next to the pond, the perfect place for residents to enjoy the mild San Diego weather year around.

The lily pond adds to the small-town feel of the community that includes charming streets, manicured lawns, lovely cottages and light-drenched apartments. It’s a place where everyone knows their neighbors. Fredericka Manor offers a full menu of life enrichment opportunities, resident-led clubs and programs. Residents are encouraged to continue pursuing their passions or learn something new.

Fredericka Manor offers residential and assisted living, skilled nursing and memory care.

Come see our pond and all of the other amazing features at Fredericka Manor by scheduling your tour today at 619-205-4112 or