After more than three months in Playa del Carmen, we’ve come across most coffee shops in town and found our favourites ones to work from.
First of all I would like to pinpoint what I define as a great coffee shop to work from. Because it’s always good to balance expectations from the start, right?
what defines a great coffee shop to work from?
I go out to work when I feel uninspired. When looking into the white walls of our apartment becomes too much routine and I cannot get into a creative mood. Then I go out to shake things up a bit and get some inspiration from my surroundings.
If I need a silent place, I stay at home. Phone calls, Skype sessions and likewise are always at home. So please have in mind that when I recommend places to work from, they are not necessarily silent. Just to make it clear 🙂
I get super inspired and motivated by beautiful interior, delicious food, a great view, music and likewise things that sweeten our lives. And when I’m inspired I work better or at least the ideas flow. Even in a noisy place (which are most places here in Mexico!) I can get into the flow of simply writing and writing. Or do a great brainstorm and then fine tune it at home.
Basically a great place to work from (for me) is a place with: Nice seating (preferably various different seating options), good coffee and food options, shade, not too much noise and most important: A place where you feel comfortable sitting for hours (no thanks to those places where the waiters start rolling eyes when pulling out your laptop).
I also enjoy working from coffee shops with other remote workers. Not necessarily because we talk (even though we often end up doing it), but because I feel like we’re this special tribe working and silently motivating each other while sipping to our coffee in nice surroundings.
So let’s dig into it:
My favourite coffee shops to work from in Playa del Carmen
Bajo Café at Mercado 30 is the place we have come the most during our time in Playa (we’re there twice a week at least). There is always a nice vibe, the coffee is the best in Playa (seriously, it is. Ricardo, the barista makes the most creamy cappuccino ever). Mercado 30 is a little arcade with three small restaurants and open seating. Sit where you wish and order from where you fancy that day. The guys from Bajo Café will even bring you the coffee all the way to the other end of the arcade if you prefer sitting there. Brilliant. The music tends to be a nice kind of slow-jazz.
There are always people around with laptops working from the various seating options; loungers or classic chairs. They also offer an affordable lunch menu: Three courses incl at drink for as little as 130 pesos. Love it!
Choux Choux is an institution in Playa del Carmen and it’s one of the more popular coffee shops to work from. It is a super popular french bakery and café. The bakery is really good (almond croissants, quiches and vegan waffles). There is live music every day around noon and in the afternoon, so it’s not a quiet place to work, but if you sit outside it’s okay. It’s a nice place for tasks like photo editing or other jobs that don’t require 100% concentration.
The quality of the coffee varies a lot, there’s no consistency, which is a shame (or actually a problem if you ask me!). We live just in front, so I always check who is the barista that day before I decide whether to stay there or chose another place. I’m very picky with my coffee, so you’ll might not have that strong feelings about it as I do 😉
Come here for the pastry and for the nice atmosphere. It’s always full and there’s a constant nice and happy vibe to it.
Café B is a small place and we have had luck by being almost by ourselves in the mornings there. The ergonomics are good (surprisingly few places have chairs suited for the height of the tables around here!), so it’s a nice place if you have a lot of writing to do. The coffee is good and so are their waffles and salads. I always get a lot done here, as there are not as many distractions as in other places. The aircon is often very cold, so bring a shirt to avoid a cold!
Fresco Hábito is a vegan coffee shop/restaurant and great if you fancy a smoothie bowl to freshen you up while working. The temperature there is always nice as they somehow manage to keep it fresh with shade and lots of fans (it is an open-air restaurant).
Coco y Miel
Coco y Miel is by the far end of 5a Avenida (the main pedestrian street). It is a tiny place and not suitable for an entire day of work, but it’s nice and cosy for a couple of hours. There is a combo of avocado toasts and coffee at a very cheap price, so that’s ideal if traveling on a budget.
We quit our jobs by the end of 2018 to travel and work online. Read about it here. Since Easter we have been in Playa del Carmen, Mexico, read about the decision to take a travel break here
Happy travels everyone!