On the Georgia coast, on neighboring quiet islands, two exceptional and historically interesting properties are currently on the market. On St. Simons Island, Georgia is the winter home of renowned painter Maxfield Parrish. And on neighboring Sea Island, Georgia is the spectacular home originally built by Pulitzer Prize-winning Playwright Eugene O’Neill.

Maxfield Parrish’s St. Simons Island Winter Retreat

In the early 1900s, distinguished painter Maxfield Parrish and his wife Lydia took breaks from the Pennsylvania winter at their retreat on St. Simons Island.

Maxfield Parrish was born in Philadelphia, the son of painter and etcher Stephen Parrish. Maxfield attended Haverford College, the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and Drexel Institute of Art, Science and Industry. A commission to illustrate “Mother Goose in Prose” in 1897 launched his formal career. He went on to illustrate a body of children’s’ books—his signature use of vivid colors led his illustrations to overshadow the authors and the books become known as “Parrish books.” In the 1910s and 1920s, he was commissioned by popular magazines including Colliers and Life and was a favorite of advertisers as well.

During their time on St. Simons Island, Maxfield’s wife, Lydia, became enchanted with African singing circles and songs that had been passed through generations of African-American slaves. She was dedicated to studying and preserving the tradition and published a collection of songs in 1942.

Parrish was one of the most successful illustrators and painters of his time and his style continues to influence artists today. His most famous painting, Daybreak, sold in 2006 for $7.6 million.

Maxfield Parrish "Daybreak" (1922). Photo from wikipedia

Maxfield Parrish “Daybreak” (1922). Photo from wikipedia

The five-bedroom, four-bath home is currently on the market for $1,090,000. The secluded estate is surrounded on three sides by marsh, a National Park and tidal creek. The home features fabulous handcrafted woodwork, an antique Fireplace from the 1700s, sunroom with Mexican tile, and a large sparkling gunite pool. Because of its location adjacent to the Bloody Marsh Battle Site, British, Spanish and Guale Indian artifacts from the property’s rich history continue to be unearthed. To see photos and for more information visit Hodnett Cooper Real Estate.


11812 Old Demere Road, Hodnett Cooper Real Estate

11812 Old Demere Road, Hodnett Cooper Real Estate


11812 Old Demere Road, Hodnett Cooper Real Estate

11812 Old Demere Road, Hodnett Cooper Real Estate

11812 Old Demere Road, Hodnett Cooper Real Estate


Eugene O’Neill’s Sea Island Home

The Sea Island home was built for the Eugene and his wife Carlotta O’Neill in 1931. They called the home “Casa Genotta,” a combination of their first names.

A groundbreaking playwright, Eugene O’Neill was among the first American playwrights to includes speeches in American vernacular and involve characters on the fringe of society. O’Neill’s first published play Beyond the Horizon opened on Broadway in 1920 and was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Drama. In 1936, he received the Nobel Prize for Literature. His most notable plays include The Emperor Jones, Anna Christie (Pulitzer Prize 1922), Desire Under the Elms, Strange Interlude (Pulitzer Price 1928), Mourning Becomes Electra and The Iceman Cometh.

His only well-known comedy, Ah, Wilderness, was written at the Sea Island home. Perhaps a nod to the relaxed atmosphere of beachfront island living.

O’Neill is not only known for his work, but also his tumultuous personal life. At times in his life, he suffered from depression and alcoholism. He left Princeton University after only one year, with varying accounts regarding his departure/suspension. He married three times and had three children. In 1943, O’Neill disowned his daughter Oona for marrying Charlie Chaplin when she was 18 and Chaplin was 54.

After his death, Carlotta arranged for his autobiography, Long Day’s Journey Into Night, to be published and subsequently won the Pulitzer Prize in 1957.

The beachfront home was built in the 1930s—the O’Neills resided in the home from 1932 to 1937. The second floor features a library designed to resemble a wooden ship where O’Neill did most of his writing while on Sea Island. Other features include seven bedrooms, six baths and an extraordinary brick-paved swimming pool area.

The home is currently on the market for $6,450,000. To see photos and for more information, visit Sea Island Properties.

Eugene O'Neill's Sea Island home, "Casa Genotta" (photo from curbed.com)

Eugene O’Neill’s Sea Island home, “Casa Genotta” (photo from curbed.com)

Eugene O'Neill's Sea Island home (photo from curbed.com)

Eugene O’Neill’s Sea Island home (photo from curbed.com)


Source: Wikipedia


Join Hodnett Cooper REALTOR Winnie Skarpalezos at an Open House Saturday, February 28 from 10:30 am to 1:30 pm. 571 Green Swamp Road, Brunswick, Georgia.

This home has the best of both worlds: farm-like setting on acreage, yet convenient to all of Brunswick’s amenities. Just 8 miles from the Target Shopping Center in Brunswick, this 3-bedroom, 2-bath home sits on 3.88 acres. Included on the property is a multi-stall barn for horses, new three-rail fencing and an additional fenced area (originally designed for goats). There is also a large workshop with electricity.

The home is in excellent condition with a 15’ x 18’ master bedroom with tray ceiling, large walk-in closet, and extra area off the master that could be used as an office or nursery. Also inside are three living/dining areas, sunroom and front porch overlooking the pasture.

At $214,900, the home is USDA zoned and could be purchased with no money down. Do not miss the opportunity to see this unique, beautiful property.

For directions, additional details or to schedule a private showing, contact Winnie Skarpalezos:


Office Phone: 912-291-3486

Office Fax: 912-634-8350
Cell Phone: 912-258-0080


by Holly Ponsell, REALTOR

I have a number of clients who want to purchase property in the Golden Isles, but are on the fence about when to act. In 2014 single family home prices in St Simons Island, Georgia increased 7.5% and mainland Brunswick, Georgia increased 17.1% over 2013. And the National Association of Realtors predicts gradual increases in the coming year. If you’re like my clients who are thinking about a purchase, now is the time to enter the market before prices rise. I—or any of the agents at Hodnett Cooper—would be happy to help you find the perfect new home. Give Hodnett Cooper Real Estate a call today.



Holly Ponsell

Office Phone: 912-291-3493
Cell Phone: 912-217-1631
Office Fax: 912-264-6616

Holly Ponsell brings a wide range of experience to her real estate career. She worked in human resources to interview and screen call center employees. In addition, she worked with the family business, Ponsell Heating and Air, managing and assisting in all aspects of the business—from scheduling to marketing to customer service. As a result, Holly is professional, organized, hard working, creatively solves problems and values positive customer relations.

Holly enjoys meeting new people and developing strong relationships based on respect, trust and integrity. Holly’s skills are varied and honed—with a sensitivity and astuteness that comes from being a business owner. Whether her clients are first-time home buyers, investors, or relocating, she handles each with the individual attention and care they deserve. Holly recognizes that buying a home is one of the biggest decisions in life and she works hard to keep clients informed and educated.

Holly is married to Tommy Ponsell and they have three children. She loves fishing, antiquing, gardening, traveling and is an avid numismatist (coin collector).


201 Sarah Drive

201 Sarah Drive


The National Association of REALTORS (NAR) predicts a revival in the first-time home buyer market after Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac announced they will offer 3% down payment loans.

Previously, Freddie and Frannie issued loans with a minimum 5% down payment (and the standard down payment for mortgages insured through Freddie Mac and Frannie Mae was 20%). This development could make home ownership more realistic for first-time buyers.

This follows a downward trend in first-time home purchases. The NAR reported that despite improving job market and low interest rates, the share of first-time buyers fell to 29%, its lowest point in nearly three decades.

According to the NAR article detailing the new loans:

The new loans announced by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will be fixed-rate mortgages for up to 30 years, available only on a primary residence. Fannie plans to begin issuing the 3 percent loans before the end of the year. Mortgage insurance payments will be required, and qualified buyers will need to complete a financial counseling program.

At Hodnett Cooper Real Estate, we love helping first-time buyers find the perfect spot to call home in St. Simons Island, mainland Brunswick, Glynn County and all of the Golden Isles. Now is the perfect time to explore your options. Contact a Hodnett Cooper REALTOR today.

Source articles: Stage Set to Revive First-Time Buyer Market

More Americans to Buy Homes with Three Percent Down



The St. Simons Island condominium and townhome market is strong. In the first three quarters of 2014 versus the same period last year, the south end of St. Simons Island experienced a 70% increase in the total number of condominium sales. The growth can be partially attributed to the increase in new construction inventory, but it also shows that there is interest and demand in this market segment. Whether on St. Simons Island or anywhere in the Golden Isles, let one of the Hodnett Cooper Real Estate experts help you find the perfect spot to call home.

Source: Golden Isles MLS (January-September 2013 vs 2014)

At the close of the third quarter, Hodnett Cooper Real Estate has more good news to report for Glynn County, Georgia real estate. Excluding Sea Island data*, residential sales throughout Glynn County have increased 6.6% over the same period last year, and the average sales price increased by 8%. We love sharing news about our market improvement almost as much as we love helping you buy or sell your next home! Let Hodnett Cooper—the market leader—work for you in your next real estate transaction.


* We often omit data from Sea Island because of its unique composition. On Sea Island, with the average home price well above $1 million, a single sale can skew the overall data. Omitting Sea Island provides a more accurate representation of real estate activity in Glynn County. For market data specific to your neighborhood, contact one of our experienced REALTORS at Hodnett Cooper Real Estate.


509 Wesley Oak Drive, St. Simons Island

Hodnett Cooper Real Estate is pleased to report that through the first three quarters of 2014, the total number of real estate sales on St. Simons Island, Georgia has increased by 14% over the same period last year. This year alone, there have been 420 sales on St. Simons Island. This is a strong sign of market improvement.

If you are buying or selling on St. Simons Island—or anywhere in the Golden Isles—our 50 agents in three offices are ready to put their expertise to work for you.


Join Hodnett Cooper Real Estate REALTORS and partners for an evening of open houses on beautiful Oak Grove Island. Nine homes will be open to the public on Thursday, November 6 from 4pm to 6pm. REALTORS and sponsors will be on hand to answer questions and raffle prizes. Sign in at homes to enter a chance to win gift certificates to The Cooper Pig, Halyards, Island Day Spa, Parkers and movie passes!


142 Riverwalk, Oak Grove Island: Open 4-6pm on Thursday, November 6, 2014

These magnificent homes include new construction, gourmet kitchens, incredible finishes, lagoon and marsh views and jaw-dropping outdoor spaces. This is a great opportunity to explore the living options in the Oak Grove Island neighborhood. Oak Grove community amenities include deepwater marina, swimming pool, tennis courts, 18-hole golf course and clubhouse and gated entry.

To make this community open house possible, Hodnett Cooper has partnered with the following sponsors:

Creg Miller with Atlantic National Bank; Leighton Johnson & Gretchen Johnson with Silverton Mortgage; Attorney Lee Carmical with Nightingale, Liles, Dennard & Carmical; Brian Strickland with Brand Mortgage; Milton Hall with Homebridge Financial; Heather Delamarter with Paul Davis; Special Cleaning and Prestige Property Watch; Miller Construction Management; Jessica Smith with Halyards Catering; Jay Cason Appraisals; Steve Holt with Synovus.

Hodnett Cooper Real Estate looks forward to welcoming you to Oak Grove Island!



On October 3, 2014, the Wall Street Journal released an article titled “Bargain Mansions: Luxury for Less” detailing markets where luxury buyers can find high-end homes in affordable cities. The homes profiled were in St. Louis, Detroit, Toledo and Brunswick, Georgia.

As the WSJ author Adam Bonislawski says, “It isn’t news that money goes further in some real estate markets than others. Just how much further, though, can be striking.”

In the Midwest and Northeast, historic homes built during a manufacturing boom have suffered along with the economy. Jed Kolko, chief economist at Trulia says “The places where we see this [kind of property] are markets that historically had a lot of industry and a lot of money but slower economic growth recently and therefore more affordable housing.”

But the bargain mansions are not limited to the Midwest and Northeast. Just a 10-minute drive from the beach, Historic downtown Brunswick, Georgia is emerging as a “low-cost alternative” to other coastal towns like Savannah, Georgia and Charleston, South Carolina. The article profiles the Desrosiers who moved from Charleston to Brunswick, getting “twice the space for half the price.”

Hodnett Cooper Real Estate Associate Broker, Katie Brown, listed the home the Desrosiers purchased. And has another historic home listed just down the block at 716 Union Street, also featured in the article.

716 Union Street

716 Union Street

716 Union Street

716 Union Street

716 Union Street

716 Union Street








About the Wall Street Journal article, Katie Brown says, “this shows you get a lot of bang for your buck in Brunswick. It doesn’t hide the downfalls of living in a historic district, but shows the passion buyers have for craftsmanship, classic details and style.”


For more information on home values in Historic Downtown Brunswick or to learn more about current listings in Brunswick, St. Simons Island and the Golden Isles contact Hodnett Cooper Real Estate.

Katie Brown Associate Broker

Katie Brown
Associate Broker








Katie Brown, Associate Broker

About Katie: Katie Brown grew up in Brunswick, Georgia’s Historic District and has a familiarity of the area that only comes from being a lifelong resident. Katie is a graduate of University of Georgia where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Family and Consumer Sciences with an emphasis on Housing. In 2006 she brought her knowledge of the area and education to the real estate field. Katie enjoys being in a dynamic industry that focuses on relationships. Whether buying or selling, Katie makes the process enjoyable with guidance and local expertise. Katie deals with all types of property, but has a special place in her heart for historic homes.

Katie is a member at First Baptist Church of Brunswick and active in the Brunswick Junior Womens’ Club. Katie enjoys playing tennis and plays the harp. And she can often be found walking her dog, Blanche Devereaux, on the beach.


Pat Hodnett Cooper, Owner and Broker, along with Missy Neu, Associate Broker and Vice President of Business Development at Hodnett Cooper Real Estate attended the National Association of REALTORS 2014 Broker Summit. The Broker Summit in Atlanta was open to brokers nationwide and was sold to capacity. Both the President and CEO of the National Association of REALTORS were keynote speakers along with US Senator, Johnny Isakson. The Summit included breakout sessions on timely real estate issues including risk management, retention and recruitment, and marketing.

As the largest real estate company in the area, Hodnett Cooper Real Estate strives to remain on the leading edge of trends and best practices in real estate. “Attending the NAR Broker Summit was invaluable to us,” said Missy Neu, “with the changing economy, increasing consumer dependence on digital resources and evolving legal environment, hearing a global vision and engaging in discussions with industry leaders helps us to continue to improve our business vision for the future.”

Hodnett Cooper Real Estate was the only real estate brokerage from Glynn County represented at the Summit. “We had the opportunity to speak with brokers from both big cities and similarly-sized markets,” said Pat Hodnett Cooper, “it is interesting to discuss the broad picture issues that are affecting all of our companies.”

The Summit agenda was developed by brokers to gain a fresh insight into the future of the real estate market. “It was great to step away from the day-to-day buying and selling in order to see global trends and plan for the future,” said Cooper. With three offices throughout Glynn County and fifty REALTORS, Hodnett Cooper consistently ranks among the top brokerages in both number of transactions and total sales volume. “To stay at the top, we are always learning, always planning and always implementing best practices,” said Missy Neu.


Pat Hodnett Cooper

Pat Hodnett Cooper

Pat Hodnett Cooper is the Owner, Broker and President of Hodnett Cooper Real Estate, Inc. With thirty years of experience in Coastal Georgia real estate, Pat has been recognized locally and nationally as a Top Producer. She is a Life Member of the Golden Isles Association of Realtors “Circle of Excellence” and was named “Top 50 in Sales Nationwide” in 2003 by Realtor Magazine. Under Pat’s leadership, the company has grown from a handful of agents in a single office to over 40 agents in three offices.

Missy Neu

Missy Neu

Missy Neu is an Associate Broker and Vice President of New Business Development at Hodnett Cooper Real Estate. Missy has over twenty years of experience in the real estate industry. She is dedicated to assisting her clients in making the right real estate decisions by providing thorough research and communication.

Hodnett Cooper Real Estate, Inc. currently encompasses a team of more than 50 real estate professionals and services listing contracts throughout Glynn County and the Golden Isles. With offices on St. Simons Island, Brunswick and Oak Grove Island, Hodnett Cooper Real Estate, Inc serves a three-county Coastal Georgia area. For more information, call toll free 888-638-4750.