Cumbria Council has opened its ‘flagship’ £7m, 60-bed, Parkview Gardens care home in Barrow.
Residents at the home will be split into five mini-houses of 12 bedrooms offering specialist and dementia care.
Facilities will include a hairdressers, shop and laundrette.
Each bedroom will have an en suite bathroom all five units having its own kitchen, dinning room, lounge, quiet room and end of corridor seating.
Rachel Martin, registered manager for Cumbria Care, said: “With the shop area and hairdressers, someone can come up, they can get their paper, they can buy some sweets and they can have their hair done.
“Being able to access these services themselves gives a different feel to the care, it’s not all about us doing things for the residents but them maintaining some of their own independence.
“It is being called the flagship home for Cumbria County Council, and this environment gives people more choice and more independence.”
The facility will replace four homes in the area.
Cumbria Council is carrying out a £22m overhaul of its care provision, including closure of three homes in Carlisle and four in Copeland (see Care homes to close in £22m council shake-up).