- by Lisa Monti
Longtime entrepreneur Roxanne DeNicola has been a pet photographer, a nurse and an online retailer. She now is the owner of two PJ’s Coffee shop locations and five dogs, all properly pampered. The native New Orleanian also is putting her energy, creativity and experience into Café BoneJour, the much-anticipated Dog Barkery and Boutique in the Depot District that opens this month.
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Adding to her involvement and experience with pets is Roxanne’s YouTube channel, which she started six years ago as a hobby talking about dogs and reviewing pet products. “I love to talk and I love dogs,” she said.
Her channel now has some 20,000 subscribers. She also has a big following on Instagram and is developing a website where pet owners can order treats, collars and other unique pet products for both pets and their owners.
With its catchy signage and attractive window displays, Café BoneJour has drawn a good bit of interest in the weeks before the store’s soft opening June 8. Roxanne said she’s had lots of people come by to ask about the store and its merchandise.
Soon shoppers will be able to buy several brands of all-natural pet food, treats and unique dog products. There will also be a selection of gifts for dog-lovers, including T-shirts, tumblers and even charcuterie boards. And cat lovers won’t be slighted; the shop offers a variety of feline food and merch, too.
Dog-friendly Café BoneJour will welcome dogs to come in and browse, and even pick from the biscuit and chew bar.
The space includes a commercial oven where Roxanne plans to bake pet treats and cakes. She has partnered with Serious Bread, a local favorite, and a New Orleans shop to create a menu for people too, one that includes breakfast items, lunch dishes and afternoon snacks that customers can enjoy at the outside patio tables or carry out for later. Selections will include scones, cookies, energy bars, chicken salad sandwiches, hummus and flatbread.
For the grand opening June 26, Café BoneJour is partnering with neighboring Mon Amie Boutique and the BBQ Depot for a celebration that will feature a pet costume contest with prizes from 1:30 – 2 pm, food, vendors and music by popular New Orleans musicians Junior and Sumtin Sneaky from 2 – 5 pm. In July she plans an ice cream social for dogs and their owners “because dog-lovers like to socialize.”
Roxanne believes that dogs have a special place in the lives of their owners for good reason. “I think it’s because dogs give you unconditional love. They don’t care what you look like, they love you and are always happy to see you. People love their kids, but they love their dogs.”
For more information on the grand opening and upcoming events, go to Café BoneJour’s Facebook page and Instagram.
Café BoneJour Dog Barkery and Boutique
146 Blaize Avenue, Bay St. Louis
Hours of operation:
Monday-Saturday 10-6, Sunday 10-3