Parisians are not renowned for their willingness to meet new people. However, a revolution is underway in the French capital. With a sharp increase in recent years of self-employed, office-less twenty-somethings, there are now more bright young things than ever who are keen to find themselves a dynamic yet comfortable and sociable space in which to create their content behind the comfort of their laptop screens.
As a result, ‘working cafés’ have been born: café chains such as Hubsy (with outlets in the third and tenth arrondissements) and humorously named Anticafé (to be found in the thirteenth, first, third and 10th arrondissements within Paris, and with outposts dotted in numerous French cities, as well throughout Europe). Most of these workspace-cum-cafés operate through offering a flat-rate price per hour or day, where one is at ease to work away in their spaces with unlimited coffee, tea and snacks and without the constant annoyance of coffee shop owners anxious to clear the space for their next client. Most work cafés also offer separate relaxation areas for downtime, for those who are in need of a work break, as well as private meeting rooms, which can be hired for far more reasonable prices than those you would find within privately-owned premium office spaces.
There is no doubt that this is a perfect solution for those in search of a productive space to work in outside of their homes, without paying the premium of, or having to commit to, renting an office space. In addition, this new concept encompasses the social aspect of an office, which many self-employed individuals lack. Working cafés also allow the separation between home life and work life, the importance of which is increasingly being declared by wellness experts and doctors alike.
Nor is it unusual to encounter young workaholics in most cafés which offer indoor seating in Paris: Judy, a healthy brunch spot, is more often than not crammed with those with their eyes glued to their laptop screens. Interestingly, this productive dynamic appears to co-exist harmoniously with those who frequent such cafés in order to meet friends for a catch-up over a light meal and beverage.
It is no secret that coffee, and tea, do not come cheap in this stylish French capital – perhaps this is the solution to finding a coffee shop in Paris that will not burn your wallet, while also boosting work productivity. A further benefit of the increase in number and resulting competition amongst these specialist coffee shops, such as Le Peloton in the fourth arrondissement, could be a potential reduction in coffee prices: a godsend for caffeine-deprived Parisians!