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The Ten Best ‘Coffices’ in Sydney

Concrete Playground handpicks the cafes that best accommodate working folk in Sydney.

By Lisa Omagari
July 11, 2012
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The Ten Best ‘Coffices’ in Sydney

Concrete Playground handpicks the cafes that best accommodate working folk in Sydney.

By Lisa Omagari
July 11, 2012
  shares

Yes, that’s right: we said coffice. And by coffice we mean 'coffee shop office'. Long gone are the days when all you required from your favourite café was a skilled barista and a selection of tabloids. Nowadays we expect a whole lot more — Wi-Fi, powerpoints, and ample table surface area, for starters.

We want to help you meet that deadline, avoid that frustrating colleague, or master the art of procrastination. So, for those of you seeking out attractive alternatives to working at home, uni or your partitioned space, let us present to you the cafés that best accommodate working folk in Sydney.

1. Berkelouw Café Bookstore, Newtown

Just off King Street is Berkelouw Café Bookstore, Newtown’s converted warehouse favourite. We’re pretty sure you’ll enjoy the workspace – sprawl your stuff out over one of the chesterfields or set up shop at one of the large communal tables perched on the second floor. You’ll find organic fair trade coffee and freshly baked goods; a winning recipe for an enchanting meeting between boho locals and coffice fanatics.

Mon-Sat 10am-9pm, Sun 10am-8pm; 6-8 O’Connell Street, Newtown; 02 9557 1777; www.berkelouw.com.au

2. Café Otto, Glebe

Otto’s back! After burning down in 2010, Glebe’s institutional Cafe Otto has returned in good form. Owner Neil Mirani is offering up a hearty café tucker menu and extensive beverage list in a relaxed coffice setting. With padded bench seating, joinable tables, open fire, Wi-Fi, and $12 specials for everyday of the week, Otto’s a Sydney uni kid’s escapist haven and our pick for coffice comfort.

Mon–Sun 10am–Late; 79 Glebe Point Road, Glebe; 02 9556 1519.

3. The Fern, Redfern

Residing in an old terrace house, The Fern could almost be code for, “working from home”. The three things that make this place a real gem? The Melburnian blend Gravity, the good form retro interior, and the fact that you can get a seven course degustation for $49 (save this for the ‘rewarding of self’ once coffice duties are complete). Bunk down in one of the slouchy armchairs and enjoy the café’s Wi-Fi. Redfern’s cosiest coffice.

Tue–Sun 8am–3pm, Thu–Sat 6–10pm; 4 Pitt Street, Redfern; 02 8399 0070; www.thefern.com.au

4. Gertrude and Alice, Bondi Beach

Guzzle down on a honey infused chair and sink into one of the snug sofas. With over 25,000 books at your disposal Gertrude and Alice is the unchallenged coffice for workers with research heavy projects, people addicted to the smell of ancient books or those seeking solace from the cold pinch of traditional libraries. A coffice for readers.

Mon–Fri 9.30am–11pm, Sat–Sun 8.30am–Late; 46 Hall Street, Bondi Beach; 02 9130 5155; www.gertrudeandalice.com.au

5. MCA Café, The Rocks

Located on level four of the new Mordant Wing, this place boasts the view across the quay, free Wi-Fi and is top of our list for the coffice shmooze. Get in early to knock over some work in the indoor ‘canteen’ then liaise with clients or coffice mates over a glass or two on the terrace. They’re open 24 hours on Thursdays (kitchen open until 9pm), too. Score!

Mon–Sun 10am–5pm, Thu 24 hrs; Level 4, 180 George Street, The Rocks; 02 9250 8443; www.mca.com.au

6. The Grounds of Alexandria, Alexandria

New kid on the block, the Grounds of Alexandria, is for coffice goers who enjoy the outdoors and have a tolerance for the little humans. Yes, there will be both queues and prams, but don’t let this put you off – order from the takeaway counter then kick back in the garden. Enjoyment of the chicken run, pebbled paths, and rustic shared tables is best left to cofficers looking for creative inspiration and/or those on a quest to nail the whole kitchen garden thing.

Mon-Fri 7am-4pm, Sat-Sun 8am-3pm; Building 7A/2 Huntley Street, Alexandria; 02 9699 2225; www.groundsroasters.com

7. Gallery Café, Annandale

The pioneer of Booth Street café culture. With a wide selection of hearty breakfasts, lunches, and snacks served amongst canvas-covered walls, this coffice is best for ample desk space. Seating over 100, the open space willingly hosts large groups but also welcomes lingerers in its quiet corners.

Mon–Sat 7am–5pm, Sun 8am–5pm; 43 Booth Street, Annandale; 02 9692 8449; www.gallerycafe.com.au

8. BangBang Espresso Bar and Cafe, Surry Hills

So what do ex-Ministry of Sound DJs do when they call it quits? Apparently they run hipster cafes in the tree-lined streets of Surry Hills. BangBang Espresso Bar and Café is the perfect retreat from the hustle and bustle – the laidback coffice for those needing to catch up on a few things. Casual and accommodating for quiet coffice folk.

Mon–Fri 8am–4pm, Sat–Sun 8am–3pm; 113 Reservoir Street, Surry Hills; 02 9281 0018.

9. Broadway Lounge, Chippendale

Students rejoice, because Broadway Lounge was made for you. With free Wi-Fi, 10% student discounts and space aplenty, Broadway Lounge is a welcome relief to on-campus cram sessions. And don’t forget the karaoke night on Wednesdays – the best form of stress-relief out there if you ask us.

Mon–Sat 8am–Late, Sun 8am–10pm; 166-170 Broadway, Chippendale; 02 9212 2007; www.broadwaylounge.com.au

10. Café Hernandez, Potts Point

Say goodbye to those grease-ball kebabs and hello to tasty churros. Café Hernandez is Kings X’s 24 hour haunt – the perfect late night coffice (of a weeknight, that is). Hernandez is an excellent solution for tight deadlines and middle of the night internet-gone-down fiascos. With an enviable selection of roasts and a famous hot chocolate, this place is fully equipped to give you that kick into action no matter what time of day or night. The coffice most suited to coffee fiends and night owls.

Mon–Sun 24 hours; 60 Kings Cross Road, Potts Point; 02 9331 2343; www.cafehernandez.com.au

Main image via mrlancerichardson on Flickr

Published on July 11, 2012 by Lisa Omagari

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  • Reader comments...

    Callista - August 6, 2015

    If cafes don't want people to hang around, they don't provide wifi and plug-ins. Simple. Some places are work-study friendly, some aren't, which is why it's helpful someone's done the research and compiled a list like this.

    Doug Suiter - July 25, 2015

    Heads Up! Just stopped in at Otto this morning following this list and the place is a demolition site as at 25 July 2015. Probably a good idea to ammend the list.

    - July 12, 2012

    Ampersand on crown st in surry is good too

    - July 12, 2012

    It's a lovely idea, but the plug-in-and-stay 'coffice' mentality can be crippling for cafe owners too. Nothing worse than turning away tables when you've got someone sitting at a table for hours on end spending little more than the price of a coffee.

    - July 12, 2012

    It's a lovely idea, but the plug-in-and-stay 'coffice' mentality can be crippling for cafe owners too. Nothing worse than turning away tables when you've got someone sitting at a table for hours on end spending little more than the price of a coffee.

    - July 12, 2012

    What was the criteria? Free wi-fi is a massive bonus for cafe workers but many of these places don't have it. Still, a great list! @Jordy - I would have thought cafe workers would be great for cafes during slower periods (ie. weekdays) to keep the coffee machine on and cafe buzz alive!

    - July 12, 2012

    @Jordy. In relation to your comment cafe owners either want the business or they don't. One would have thought in the hard economic times that business owners would be grateful for the ongoing support. But business owners of this country never seem to miss the chance to have a whinge about something do they? This mentality reminds me of the female restaurant owner who has recently shut down in Surry Hills because diners couldn't abide by the very strict rules and regulations of her restaurant. If any cafe owner asked me to move on for that reason, I'd be mightily offended, and runs contrary to the whole concept of 'hospitality'...

    - July 15, 2012

    Surely Gertrude & Alice is too busy and packed to work for long? Toby's Estate Woolloomooloo makes an excellent coffice: it's spacious, relaxed and accustomed to business meetings/preparations.

    - January 10, 2013

    At Gertrude and Alice now.. no wifi.. no power points.. not sure who put this place on the list.. but if you're trying to get anything done - don't bother coming here.

    - January 10, 2013

    At Gertrude and Alice now.. no wifi.. no power points.. not sure who put this place on the list.. but if you're trying to get anything done - don't bother coming here.

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