I didn’t think I could possibly get excited about another nautical themed gift shop by the lake. Well, kudos to Lake Effect in Excelsior for proving me wrong. The new boutique puts a fresh spin on the boating life—starting with a modern space bathed in late afternoon sunlight to a cohesive mix of novelties (water bottles for dogs!) and luxe $65 beach towels.
You might easily mistake owner Danielle Riley for an assistant, but don’t let her youthfulness fool you—the first time storeowner grew up at Scandia Down, the venerable bedding shop her mom owns at Galleria. She’s also passionate about being on the lake. In fact, boating is in her blood: Riley is a descendent of the founder of Chris-Craft. She sells Chris-Craft jackets and shirts, which have been flying out the door.
Another big seller is the handcrafted wagon-style wooden boats—$550 a pop, and perfect for pulling gear, or children, down to the lake. Ah, the life.
I keep wondering if we’re nearing a point of saturation on gifts and home accessories in Excelsior, but the success story of Water Street is that each indie retailer has a local focus, with a unique point of view.