New Shop Brings Rental Business Close To Bay St. Louis Beach, But Not On It

Scan most areas along Harrison County Beaches, and you'll find jet ski and many other vendors renting items. But one place you won't find them is on Hancock County beaches.

"I think in our situation, not having commercial activities on the sand beach itself, that's what makes Bay St. Louis," Mayor Eddie Favre says. "We don't have all the commercial activities cluttering up the beach front."

However a new business located on Beach Boulevard that's opening this weekend called "Da Beach House" will offer tourists and locals a place to rent kayaks for the water or bikes for a ride along the beach. It's a unique business that promotes healthy lifestyles.

"You can go in different locations, and you can see a kayak shop or a bike shop, a juice and coffee bar, art galleries and gifts merchandise and a non profit, but you never see them all under one roof," beach business owner Colleen Read says. "We're here to offer it to the Mississippi Gulf Coast."

Not being able to rent items directly from the sand beach doesn't bother Read.

"We're right where we need to be," she says. "To have it here, we're able to take better care of our customers. We're able to give them the education they need that a beach vending facility doesn't necessarily provide. We can show them videos on how to paddle effectively, give CPR classes, water safety classes."

Mayor Favre says that things aren't likely to change on the beach front any time soon.

"The beach front, except for the commercial areas in the downtown district, has always been zoned open beaches because the property owners want it that way, and I think they still want it that way."

Favre says operating from Beach Boulevard gives tourists and residents the best of both worlds.