Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Eaton Bikes Key West – A New Fave Shop

Eaton Bikes Drawing
Paradise is best on two wheels.  With a slogan like that, we knew we found the best bike shop in Key West.  On vacation in the Florida Keys, we spent a day in Key West, home of Hemmingway, the Southernmost Point in the United States and people dressed in silver catsuits and body paint also known as street performers.  It’s also the home of a very cool bike shop, Eaton Bikes, just a few blocks off the main drag of Duvall Street, where you can also catch a drag show if so inclined.  We opted for stops at Mallory Square, Panini Panini sandwich shop on Duvall and Virginia Streets, Fort Zachary Taylor State Park, the Southern Most Point marker, Higgs Beach, and a wonderful vegan/vegetarian bar/restaurant on Southard Street called simply, “The Café.”  The first stop however, was the bike shop.

Cruise to Southernmost Point
We’ve rented beach cruisers a few years ago in Key West, but I couldn’t remember the shop name.  All I can recall is that the shop had an actual name as opposed to Key Bikes, Bike Key West, Sunshine Cycles or any goofy touristy combination of bike related and tropical related words.  “It’s a real shop name,” I said, “not Key West Bike Rental.”  We binged and googled “Key West Bike Shop” on our phones as we drove down the sliver of Highway 1 that ties the keys together.  We scrolled through the results.  The only bike shop that came up with a normal name was Eaton Bikes, 830 Eaton Street.  “That must be it!”

Mirror in Eaton Bikes Restroom
Every bike shop in Key West rents beach cruisers.  I’m also pretty sure that every bank, bar, sandwich stand and parasailing outfit also rent bikes.  We wanted a real bike shop, run by people into cycling.  I didn’t want to rent from an “activity” center and people more interested in our credit card number than making sure we had good bikes and a great time.  The second the shop door bell clanged overhead, we definitely stepped into the right place.  Wow!

The staff at Eaton was super friendly.  The price was right, $18 for a 24 hour rental.  Being typical fussy cyclists, even with beach cruisers, they spent extra time making sure our saddles and handlebars were set up on our Jamis cruisers where we wanted them.  While they closed at 8pm, they instructed that if we were out late we could lock the bikes to the fence and drop the key in a mailbox.  They even had lights on the bikes.  While they went about setting up bikes for all six of us, I set out in the shop snapping pictures of the hand painted cruiser bikes and interesting bike art.  

Fun Handpainted Goodness
Paul Frank Sockmonkey Saddle

Not Sure If It Honked or Squaked

Key West Headlights

Should've Bought For My Cross Bike

Across from The Cafe'

Token Seagull on Dock Shot

And, The Token Sunset


Mountain Bike Helmets said...

Eaton Bikes Key West is really a nice shop. I love the fun handpainted bicycles. I adore the Paul Frank Sockmonkey Saddle as well. Thanks for sharing these photos about great finds in the shop. :)

Anonymous said...

I adore the Paul Frank Sockmonkey Saddle as well.
cruiser bike

kiel597 said...

Thanks for the all the great reviews. We are so happy that you and your party had a great time and were pleased with the bikes. Hope to see you again soon! Kiel from Eaton Bikes.

kiel597 said...

Thanks for the great review! We are so glad to hear that you and your party were happy with the service and the bikes. Looks like you had a great time. We hope to see you again soon! Kiel at Eaton Bikes