Welcome to Old Town Bay St. Louis!
Mississippi Gulf Coast
Our authentic character, historic buildings, and friendly folks are just a few of the reasons why Budget Travel Magazine named us one of the "Coolest Small Towns in America" in April 2013. And Coastal Living Magazine named Bay St. Louis one of the top ten small beach towns in the country in 2010! Explore Old Town using the menu above - or check out quick links to individual merchants below. Come play for a day, you may want to stay!
Coolest in the South!
In Budget Travel Magazine's annual contest, Bay St. Louis was chosen as one of the top three Coolest Small Towns in the country for 2013 - and we ranked above other Southern contenders by a long shot. That makes us the Coolest Small Town in the South by our way of thinking and gives us major bragging rights! So start bragging! Here's the link to the whole article. Share it with friends and business associates. To read the article in Budget Travel On-line, click here!
December Second Saturday "Hot Spots"
stay "Hot" all month!
111 North Second Street
Antique Maison is located just off Main Street, at 111 N. Second Street. Owners Sylvia and Ed Young’s antiques and collectible mall contains over 35 vendors and over a dozen artists in 7,000 square feet of space. Corridors lined with everything from vintage fishing lures and hand tools to crystal glassware and furniture wind back and around in a delightful maze, leaving customers wondering exactly where they entered. Sylvia Young jokes in a take-off on the Gilligan Island’s theme song that “shoppers come in for a three-hour tour and may get lost.”
In addition to antiques, the shop carries repurposed furniture, locally created art for both home and garden.
The Youngs moved to Bay St. Louis in 1991, coming from New Orleans where Ed’s family had operated a furniture business on Magazine St. since 1931. The couple opened a tuxedo/bridal/costume rental and sale business in the 111 S. Second Street location, called Bon Temps Roule. The shop was an Old Town anchor from 1991 – 2005.
Sylvia explains that when Hurricane Katrina struck in 2005, she was in negotiations for the sale of Bon Temps and looking forward to retirement. After the storm destroyed the business, the couple set to work cleaning out the building, making repairs and then beginning Antique Maison. In the eight years since opening, the couple has built that business, too, into a Bay St. Louis icon.
“I’ll die with my boots on now,” laughs Sylvia.
She and Ed lead the way through the enormous shop, explaining that they carry everything from “new to deco, to vintage.” Best sellers in the mall include Shabby Chic to antique furniture, home décor, jewelry, books, patio furnishings, and art. Sylvia notes that all vendors’ Black Friday discounts have been extended through the end of December.
Carla Green Breaux is the featured artists at Antique Maison this month. She creates a line of work called “Barnacle Breaux.” Her nautically-themed home décor items are made from locally harvested driftwood, oyster shells, fish and real crabs that have undergone a preservation process.
During the Second Saturday celebration, jazz music will keep things lively from 5pm – 8pm at Antique Maison, with Ron Simpson on strings and Chris Burk on clarinet. Holiday refreshments will be served with what Sylvia says is a “never-ending flow of beverages and hors d'oeuvres.”
126 Main St.
Down the long hall at Maggie May’s Art Gallery (126 Main Street), Fashion Express may not be the largest shop in Old Town, but it’s the oldest – and there’s a good reason for that. Owner Jean Ann Thriffiley has been an Old Town merchant for over twenty years, carefully selecting each item she stocks with two qualities in mind: elegance and affordability.
In fact, she’s represented the renown coast designer Maurice Milleur since 1991, carrying his stunning pewter jewelry and giftware lines. The shop features a large selection of Milleur’s work, while Jean Ann can easily order any item she doesn’t stock.
Since Milleur’s glassware and serving pieces metal pieces can stand up to both microwave and dishwasher they’re especially popular for corporate, wedding and special occasion gift giving – something Jean Ann handles with ease. In fact, customer may order by phone and it will be ready for pick-up.
Wearables in Fashion Express include fun ladies’ apparel like scarves and shrugs and beachwear that’s as comfortable as it is eye-catching. Discriminating shoppers will also find brass and verdigris jewelry by Elaine Coyne, fused glass jewelry by Connie Bennett sterling silver and gem stones, and fun costume jewelry by J. Lauren - which comes with a lifetime guarantee. Gift-giving is especially simple with free gift-wrapping.
For the holidays, Fashion Express is brimming with bright and glimmering gift possibilities. One of Jean Ann’s newest lines of jewelry, Victoria Lynn, has quickly become one of the most popular. The Swarovski crystal pieces are created by a local mother and her four daughters in Long Beach. Shoppers will also find a special selection of winter ladies apparel, including vests and sweaters.
But the merchandise isn’t the only factor that keeps bringing customers back to Fashion Express for year after year. Jean Ann, whose husband served as a Bay St. Louis city councilman for 32 years, considers herself an Old Town ambassador. She can offer all sorts of visitor information along with tips for making the most of a “Stay in the Bay.”
To celebrate Second Saturday, Jean Ann is offering costume jewelry (excluding designers) on sale for “buy one, get the second half off.” All customers who make a purchase that day can register to win a $50 Fashion Express gift certificate at a 7:30pm drawing. Refreshments will include tastings of Lulu’s Jambalaya, with live music by local favorite, Bobby Allison.