Help for aspiring entrepreneurs in the Charleston area continues to rise.

The Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce is the latest group to get in on the wave of accelerating start-up businesses.

On Aug. 21, the business group will open its new Catalyst Center on the second floor of its offices at 4500 Leeds Ave. in North Charleston.

The center will provide entrepreneurs with access to information, mentors and support to fuel their business growth.

The grand opening is set for 5:30-7:30 p.m., and participants can view the space, make new connections and enter to win what the chamber is calling an inspiration lunch with Anita Zucker of the international conglomerate InterTech Group, based in North Charleston.

Guest speaker will be Bobby Christian, the founder and managing partner of iMPACT Ventures LLC, a growth strategy firm that matches emerging innovators with established professionals eager to share lessons, offer guidance and expedite growth.

Best B&B

Charleston's Elliott House Inn was recognized in USA Today recently as one of the 12 best bed-and-breakfasts in the country.

The publication highlighted the 25-room inn at 78 Queen St., which is managed by Charlestowne Hotels, for its location in the heart of the Historic District, relatively affordable room rates and its extra-large outdoor hot tub.

"We're delighted to see USA Today recognize The Elliott House Inn as a top bed-and-breakfast in the country," said Michael Tall, president and chief operating officer of Charlestowne Hotels. "The finely preserved historic building coupled with modern amenities and personalized service creates a unique bed-and-breakfast experience which truly epitomizes the charm of Charleston."

The Charleston bed-and-breakfast, the only one in South Carolina included in the list, was featured among the Savannah Bed & Breakfast Inn, the Union Street Inn in Nantucket, Mass., and the Key West Bed and Breakfast.

From the ground up

Engineer Michael Cox is delving into new territory.

Cox now has launched PalmettoINSITU, a Charleston-based geotechnical exploration firm specializing in extracting and presenting data from coastal, southeastern and southwestern soils prior to development and construction projects.

Engineers contract with Cox's firm to determine soil parameters for foundation requirements for structures such as bridges, multistory buildings, homes, nuclear power plants, wind turbines, cellphone towers, water tanks, etc.

Cox spent 13 years with engineering firm S&ME before starting PalmettoINSITU earlier this summer.

His previous work includes land where Boeing South Carolina is located at Charleston International Airport, Google in Berkeley County, the Naval Weapons Station in Goose Creek and other sites throughout the Southeast.

Air service

The owners of one of the two fixed-base operators that handle private aircraft at Charleston International Airport are adding more sites in the U.S.

Houston-based Landmark Aviation, which has an FBO off South Aviation Avenue, has acquired the 20 locations of Ross Aviation of Denver. The sale doesn't affect the location operation.

Texas-based Atlantic Aviation also runs a fixed-based operation at the airport.

Decade to build on

The Charleston Home + Remodel Show turns 10 this year, and it again returns to The Citadel's Johnson Hagood Stadium next weekend.

The event will showcase new custom home products by many Charleston companies.

Among the highlights are a backyard oasis built on site and inspired by one of 15 local celebrities, a chance to win a $22,000 backyard makeover in an Aug. 11 drawing by guessing which celebrity inspired the display, free admission from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Friday, 500 free hurricane kits valued at $30 each to event-goers starting at 11 a.m. Friday, tours of Allstate Insurance National Catastrophe Team's mobile claims unit, a symposium for architects to earn education credits on Friday and free grilling demonstrations.

The event runs 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Friday; 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday; and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. Admission on Saturday and Sunday is $7 for those 13 years old and older.

The event is sponsored by Charleston + Design Magazine.