Best Cafes to Work at in Singapore (Part 1)

Best Cafes to Work at in Singapore

UPDATE: We have a NEW list of awesome cafes in Singapore that are conducive for working and studying! Find the link at the end of this post!

It’s that time of the year. The marking season has descended upon us, which explains the strange phenomenon of grown adults all over the island clutching a heap of papers and weeping. Don’t judge us please. To ease the pain a little, ET and I retreat to cafes where we can seek some solace in flat whites or indulge in a plate of truffle fries as we battle the monstrosity of stress-induced gibberish and horrific handwriting.

If you’re a teacher like us, or  you need somewhere conducive and quiet to concentrate or study, here are the best cafes to work at in Singapore that we’ve found – they all offer free WiFi, comfy chairs that will not leave you with a numb butt after prolonged seating, decently good food, and most even have power point outlets that will allow you to charge your devices.

L’etoile Cafe

This cute and quaint cafe has an eclectic assortment of furniture that includes typewriter desks, grandfather clocks and hanging birdcages. There are quite a few power points available and a nice variety of seating options. They also offer a range of books from children’s stories to travel guides. The menu is extensive but what really won me over was the excellent service. Located near to the Farrer Park station, this is a great option for anyone looking to get work done in a quiet environment. Just make sure not to sit next to the window in the afternoon as the afternoon sun will hit you directly.

160 Owen Road
Weekdays: 11am – 10pm
Weekends & PH: 9am – 10pm
Nearest MRT: Farrer Park

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Habitat Coffee

This already popular cafe offers the best food of the lot. I loved their ocean linguine which had generous portions of prawns and mussels. Beverages-wise, their tiramisu latte was sweet and flavorful and their iced tea, amazing. The churros, which were crispy, warm and lightly sugared, are one of the best I’ve had. Its cozy nooks and crannies are not only great for doing work, but also perfect for people-watching. It’s the kind of cafe you could comfortably while your afternoon away at with a good book, as most of the clientele there already seems to be doing. However, do take note that they do not offer any charging points so make sure to come with all your devices fully charged if you do need to use them.

Tip: It is not advisable to go during the weekends as this is when they’re the busiest.

223 Upper Thomson Road
Closed on Mondays
Tues- Fri: 11am- 1030pm
Weekends: 1030am – 1030pm
Nearest MRT: Marymount

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Book Cafe

We arrived at 4pm on a Saturday to a full cafe, with plenty of patrons buried in their laptops. The most desirable section is the one filled with laptop-wielding patrons and students writing papers ensconced in their comfy couches. Apart from housing an impressive collection of books and magazines, what’s great about the Book Cafe is how it offers plenty of power points and the friendly staff are even willing to bring out an extension cord for you to charge your devices! Having so many people hard at work definitely adds a good element of peer pressure for you to get your work done too.

20 Martin Road
Sun to Thurs: 8:30am – 10:30pm
Fri & Sat: 8:30am to 12:30am
Nearest MRT: Clarke Quay/ Chinatown

The Reading Room

Quaint and quiet, The Reading Room feels somewhat like a British tea room meets home library with its floor-to-floor shelves of books and vintage leather armchairs. It’s adorable how their menu is bound within a Playtime Stories book!  It provides a great ambience for a quiet meeting and there’s just something about being surrounded by books that will get your work mojo going.

19 Bukit Pasoh Road
Mon to Thurs: 11am to 30pm
Fri to Sun: 8am to 1am
Nearest MRT: Outram Park

best cafes to work at in Singapore

Lowercase Cafe

Located within the Lasalle campus, this industrial cafe exudes an artsy, creative vibe and is filled with the likes of musicians and creatives jazzing things up on their MacBooks and guitars. Come here if you need to get inspired because you’ll wish you could whip out your MacBook or guitar to blend in too. There’s a nice range of seating options- from comfy cushioned crates to bar stools and wooden benches and an abundance of power points. WiFi, though not provided directly by the cafe, is readily available from the Lasalle network. Food is significantly cheaper if you’re a student, but still reasonably affordable if you’re not. If you’re lucky enough, you might even be able to snooze or lepak one corner on one of their sofas if you need a break! For creative inspiration, head straight for the Lego corner.

1 McNally Street
Mon to Sat: 9:30am to 8:30pm
Nearest MRT: Little India

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Table Manners

Technically more of a bistro than a cafe, Table Manners is unique as the tables are communal which means there’s a high chance you’ll be sitting with people you don’t know. Think of it as going back to the days of eating in the school canteen except with fancy Scandinavian furniture. If you prefer a spot of greenery, you could even choose to work at the alfresco dining area which overlooks a cute pond with silver swans. We were there at the end of the lunch service and were basically the only people there until the start of dinner. Its great choice of music will put you in a good mood to get through whatever work you need to get done.

Changi City Point #01-68/69
Sun to Wed: 11:30am to 11pm
Thurs to Sat: 11:30am to midnight
Nearest MRT: Expo
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Do you know of any other great spots to work at? If so, do share them with us (: Happy marking to all fellow teachers!

If you haven’t found any of these cafes suitable, check out our LATEST post on the Best Cafes to Work at in Singapore (Part 2) for more recommendations!

Visiting Singapore? You might find these articles useful!

This article originally appeared on ETSY Explores.

39 Comments:

  1. I also like canopy / cornerstone at bishan park. Quiet, gd fd, thers coffee n beer

  2. Can try this place at North Bridge Road too, dropped in after unsuccessfully trying to nab a study spot at macs. They open late and its pretty cosy and decent. Its called Cheeky Chicky.

  3. Many thanks! Have been looking for this compilation for super long, needed a place to work with power point outlets , you are an angel (or rather angels :))

  4. Are there any work-friendly cafes that have offer coffee re-fills?

    • Hi Alvin,

      Unfortunately we don’t know of any cafes that offer coffee refills, and a search on Google doesn’t seem to throw up anything either. But we’ll keep a look out for you!

  5. If L’etoile cafe is full, go one road down to Woodshed 204 at Rangoon Road. It’s a nice quiet place to work too… Try the cake in the jar 🙂

  6. try drury lane! along tanjong pagar road. The second level is cosy and the staff don’t hover around to make you feel uncomfortable.

  7. The Loft @ chinatown, opp. Tong Heng

  8. There’s the Tastemaker Cafe at Old Havelock Road too!
    Quiet and change of ambience when you enter.

  9. There is a cafe also along Upper Thomson Road near Habitat called November 8. They provide wifi and it’s always quiet there! The staff are also really friendly and once lent me a charger for my Macbook 🙂

  10. Thanks for the list. It would be great if you had included information on WiFi availability for each of the café too!

  11. Check out Yellow Cup Coffee! They have 4 outlets now, at Clarke Quay, Tanjong Pagar, Alexandra, and Buona Vista.

    The Clarke Quay outlet has WiFi, and is such a cosy and quiet place with huge tables for teamworks! I’ve seen a couple of design students coming over to work on their projects there!

  12. Even though I have to agree that the ambience at Lowercase blends in well into LASALLE atmosphere, however, i gotta disagree about their food. The portion is so frugal and the food is definitely not appetising. I recommend you to go there for a coffee or two to complement your work, but not for a lunch/dinner date or so.

    • Hi Joanna! Actually we would agree with you that it might not be the best place for a lunch/dinner date, but as a cafe primarily for working we didn’t find the food too bad. Perhaps we need to go back again for a second review (:

    • TOTALLY AGREE! Pricey and terrible tasting!

  13. Drury Lane Cafe at Tanjong Pagar is pretty quiet on weekdays and sometimes weekends as well. Head to the upper floor. They do a mean mocha too.

  14. Hey there, was just at Table Manners just yesterday, this was at 3pm in the afternoon. The place was empty after the lunch crowd had left. So we tried to work, there having ordered a fish & chip, when I took out my laptop, the staff came over and said that working there wasn’t allowed…
    kinda left a bad taste after that….

    • Hi Justin,

      Oh dear… that’s strange! The last time we were there it was also around 3pm in the afternoon and we stayed till about 6:30pm and they never said anything. So sorry to hear that you had such an unpleasant experience ):

  15. I am very surprised to see Habitat on this list. I in that area all the time and have been here on several visits – I find the food pricey, and bad! For the price they are asking, the portion is a bit small, but it’s astonishing that the taste isn’t better. Also, the place is extremely small. I stopped going there for awhile now cos it’s a waste of money – i’d rather spend my money eating chicken rice at Nam Kee which is a few doors away or the Indian restaurant also few doors away, or the Pizza place or Fat Boyz Burger or the Peranakan place opposite – sorry can’t remember any of those names cos i go so often and just enter and eat! Yes some of these places you can linger and grade your papers there too. Habitat would be my last choice. Then again maybe things have changed there?!?

    • Hi Melody! Thanks for your feedback! I actually really enjoyed the food when I was there two months ago so perhaps they’ve changed chefs or something? I do agree that the cafe is small but it’s also cosy and there are certain seats that are quite conducive for grading. But thanks for the recommendations on the other places to visit around the Upp Thomson area! Will check them out when we visit taht area in future (:

  16. My Art Space has a lovely cafe’ with a mix of tables and comfy chairs, free wi-fi, and a few power sockets. The food is limited but fine for snacks, and has excellent coffee. It is situated in the middle of the Istana Park, 31 Orchard Road. Great view of the pond, also has a few seats outside over the water.

    • Hi FM! Wow thanks for the recommendation! It definitely looks like a lovely place (for more than work too!) and we can’t wait to check it out once we get back to Singapore (:

  17. Hello Sheena! It’s me! Lol. I’m searching on cafes to work and your article turned up! Good seo juice you have flowin’ haha. Anyway good resources! Will check them out soon 🙂

    • Haha thanks babe! I don’t actually know how to work the SEO thing.. but I’m glad it’s showing up on Google :p You can check out some of the recommendations that others have given too. There seem to be some pretty cool options (:

  18. Pingback: Best Cafes to Work at in Singapore (Part 2) — etsy/explores

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  20. Awesome list! I read something similar on any job site, worth the read:http://www.parttimejobs.sg/pages/4012-12-best-cafe-jobs-singapore 🙂

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