Another important historic Brunswick structure is in the process of getting a breath of new life.
The old Rose Manor bed and breakfast on Hanover Square for the first time in years is bustling with activity. It currently is sitting atop several temporary pilings as workers get a new foundation ready for it so the circa 1872 house will be stable and strong for years to come.
When the foundation work is done, its new owners, Jason and Heath Reotts, will begin a complete overhaul of the inside, restoring the large Victorian era home to its former glory.
Their effort should be commended.
Brunswick’s streets are lined with stately homes that have stood through hurricanes, world wars, economic booms and busts and a myriad of other historic events. Along the way, they have developed a certain character that new construction just can’t quite capture.
The problem with some of the homes is that the character has degraded to downright disrepair. This has created a situation in Brunswick that presents many unique opportunities for people interested in putting in a little effort.
Whether it is a large three-story mansion or a small, two-bedroom cottage, Brunswick’s neighborhoods offer plenty of affordable options for a family looking to renovate and make a unique house with character their own.
In doing so, homeowners like the Reotts, whether they end up living in the Rose Manor or operating it as a bed and breakfast again, are adding value to the properties around them and preserving the rich history of one of two ocean-port cities in Georgia.
Brunswick is a wonderful town that has seen its property values and property tax revenue struggle since the Great Recession, but that seems to be moving in the right direction. With a shot in the arm from more people willing to keep what is already here and make it new again, we could see a renaissance that puts Brunswick on the map as a destination to rival other coastal cities.
Efforts like the Downtown Renaissance Strategic Visioning and Planning project by the Carl Vinson Institute of Government could help in providing a plan for the future.
To fulfill those plans though, we will need more people willing to make an investment.
We hope the Rose Manor’s new life will provide a glimpse into a future for the city that is bright.