The Friary, Gulf Breeze, Florida

Florida USA
4400 Hickory Shores Blvd
Gulf Breeze, FL, 32563

The Friary Center Overview

The Friary, a behavioral treatment center for individuals dealing with substance use and mental health disorders, became a part of the Lakeview Center in the 1970s. Lakeview Center, an affiliate of Baptist Health Care, is a network which offers behavioral health, child protective and vocational services to individuals around the Northwest Florida area dealing with substance dependencies, addiction disorders, mental illnesses, and intellectual disabilities. The Friary has existed for more than 40 years and bases its philosophies on understanding the full scope of its client’s addictions and focuses its recovery and treatment plan on the mind, body, and soul of a patient.

The center develops the best treatment care plan to suit each client’s unique needs. The facility offers an intimate rehabilitation environment with a high staff-to-client ratio and staff members consist of Masters-level therapists, registered nurses, mental health counselors, and an addictionologist. Evidence-based therapies such as cognitive behavioral and motivational enhancement therapy are incorporated into the treatment options and clients are also encouraged to engage in the 12-step program. The rehabilitative program for adults aged 18 and older, dealing with addiction takes place in a highly structured environment and length of stay usually lasts between 21-90 days. Additionally, the facility provides confidential assessments for patients dealing with substance addiction and thus offers medication-assisted treatment appropriately suited to the needs of the patient. Medical detox, intensive outpatient, day treatment, and inpatient services are all available at the facility.

Accommodation And Food

The center is located on Pensacola Bay, a site that acted as a retreat for Franciscan monks. The environment is serene, calm, and maintains much of the charm of that time. The grounds are beautified with live oaks with Spanish moss and azalea bushes. The facility is capable of accommodating up to 30 individuals with shared rooms, while residents are separated by gender. Each room has a bathroom and private rooms can be made available for a $3,000 monthly fee. A TV is available at the center and viewing is possible only on the weekends. Residents are advised to bring a week’s worth of comfortable clothing, workout apparel, and business-casual outfits for 12-step meetings. Clients should also bring along personal hygiene items and money for food stamps. Books, electronic devices, and outside food are prohibited in the facility.

Food is served thrice daily and prepared by a private chef. Lunch and dinner options are designed to meet nutritional guidelines. Steamed vegetables and brown rice are served regularly and residents are allowed to take caffeinated beverages.

Treatment & Therapy

The center offers various treatment and therapy options depending on the unique needs of the client. Some of these are:

  • Detoxification
  • Inpatient rehab program
  • Intensive outpatient program
  • Day/Partial Hospitalization treatment


The detox program offered at the center seeks to provide a relief from withdrawal symptoms while helping the patient adjust to a life with drugs and/or substances. Registered nurses and medical directors oversee every aspect of this treatment. Length of stay ranges from 23-30 days.

Inpatient Rehab Program

This is a 21-90 day rehabilitation program is designed to help clients maintain long-lasting abstinence while engaging them in a variety of services including counseling, relapse prevention, support groups, and many recovery programs.

Intensive Outpatient Program

This is a program for clients who do not need detox and have stable living environments. The program lasts for about 6-8 weeks and includes 20 to 40 sessions. Participants receive therapy and are engaged in support groups.

The following are a list of conditions treated at the facility:

  • Alcohol and drug addiction
  • Trauma and abuse
  • Co-occurring disorders
  • Depression
  • Stress
  • Anxiety

Therapy Options

The facility offers various options of therapy which include:

  • Group counseling
  • Individual counseling
  • Relapse Prevention
  • 12-step meetings
  • Experiential therapy
  • Cognitive behavioral therapy
  • Family therapy


The Friary costs approximately $15,000 for a 30-day treatment at the facility but payments are subject to change as it is greatly dependent on the type of treatment received. The facility does not provide Medicare or Medicaid but other insurance plans such as Tricare and Cigna are accepted. Clients are advised to contact the facility about coverage and benefits. Co-pays and deductibles are given to clients who are unable to make complete payments. Lending options are also available to clients who need help financially.


The facility is accredited by CARF (The Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities).

The Friary Advantages

The facility offers an exercise room for clients to work out and also walking, running, and swimming are outdoor recreational activities that clients can participate in as well. Holistic therapies such as acupuncture, art, and music therapy are also offered to clients in need of such treatment. An instructor comes to the facility weekly to facilitate a yoga class.

The treatment center allows clients to make sandwiches themselves after the completion of an on-site AA meeting and an outing to a restaurant after a Friday off-site meeting. Family therapy is also offered at the facility and it involves educating the next-of-kin, loved ones, and family of the client on the behavioral health issue and support methods.

A discharge plan is created to fit the unique needs of patients after the completion of a primary program. It consists of a weekly therapy group. In all, it is a good option for individuals seeking treatment and living within the Florida area.


  • Amy Gokey – Executive Director

In 2016 Amy Gokey, LMHC became the new Executive Director. Amy is licensed to practice mental health counseling and has served in different positions in the nine years that she has worked with Lakeview.

  • Jonathan Hoffman – Admissions Coordinator

Jonathan started working with the facility last year and works closely with the clinical and admissions staff. He holds a Master’s degree in Social Work and is at present progressing in the direction of earning his Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) qualification. Jonathan works with multiple clients including destitute veterans and patients suffering from substance abuse and behavioral health disorder.

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