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From Ernest Hemingway to George Orwell, writers have been flocking to Paris for centuries to inspire themselves with French culture, joie de vivre, beautiful parks, and delicious food.
Those reasons remain the same for freelancers and remote workers today, but the settings for their toil are likely to be different. Les Deux Magots is still worth a visit, but the prices certainly aren’t worth paying, and there are more tourists with guidebooks than millennials with laptops in sight.
Knowing the best places to grab a coffee and get work done makes being location-independent in Paris easier. You get to enjoy some of the best aspects of French life, including the architecture, wine, and short working hours compared to America, without having to endure the worst bits, like riding the metro at 9am.
If the hustle, bustle, and delicious pastries are too much of a distraction, the French capital also has several good co-working spaces where you can hunker down and be productive. Whatever your preference, there’ll be somewhere in Paris to set up your laptop and power through those deadlines.
The hip vibe in KB CaféShop is worth checking out, especially if you find yourself in Montmartre and need a spot with great Wi-fi away from the crowds. On sunny days, you’ll have no trouble finding KB as the seats outside will be packed with locals on laptops or chatting over dejeuner.
Special Interest: KB is located just off the street once called “a half-mile of magic”. After you’ve finished your work, you can get straight back to enjoying the city.
Food: Small portions, but the yummy breakfasts are worth checking out. Also, try the carrot cake.
Cost: As with most cafes in Paris, expect to pay around €5 for a latte. If you intend on sitting for a long time and you’re on a budget, try a cheaper espresso. In Paris, it’s very easy to spend faster than you can earn.
- Monday – Friday: 7.45am – 6.30pm
- Saturday – Sunday: 9am – 6.30pm
You’ll likely find a range of freelancers working on their latest projects at LOMI, and the large open tables are ideal for leaning over and getting to know your neighbour.
Special Interest: LOMI roasts its own beans, making for a delicious artisanal coffee experience.
Food: You’ll find pastries and baked goods on offer, but if that doesn’t suit, there are multiple bakeries in the area. C’est la vie!
- Monday – Friday: 8am – 6pm
- Saturday and Sunday: 10am – 7pm
Le Pain Quotidien Victoires
Le Pain Quotidien is a chain, but it definitely gets cafe culture right. This particular spot blends the best of chains (reasonably-priced food) with the best of independent coffee shops (beautiful interiors and an authentic bakery feel).
Special Interest: The large tables and Wi-fi make for a welcoming spot for remote workers. This location is right beside Jardin du Palais Royal, letting you work in the heart of Paris.
Food: Le Pain Quotidien has an extensive menu, but if you don’t fancy a chia or super seeds bowl, mushrooms on toast, or any of the French patisserie delights, then perhaps Asian food will grab you instead? In this area, you’ll find several Korean, Japanese, and Chinese options. Try Aki Bakery.
- Monday – Sunday: 8am – 8pm
Strada Cafe offers a wide selection of seating, so whether you need to get some reading done on a comfy chair, or prefer an upright table to work at, this is the place.
Just order a coffee, and you can expect to be left to your own thoughts for as long as you please. Vive la French cafe culture! Take note, though, that laptops aren’t allowed on the weekend!
Special Interest: Strada Cafe lies between Le Jardin du Luxembourg and Jardin des Plantes, and is within walking distance of several major tourist attractions. Rue Mouffetard is close by as well, which is a great place for lunch and a stroll.
Food: Toasties, salads and croissants dominate the menu, so you won’t go hungry while you work.
- Monday – Friday: 8am – 6.30pm
- Saturday – Sunday: 10am – 6.30pm
Address: 24 Rue Monge, 75005 Paris, France
With a Wi-fi code of “cheesecake”, you know what you’re getting yourself in for at Coffee Spoune. Although Folks and Sparrows is a popular cafe also located on the same road, Coffee Spoune is often a quieter, more enjoyable place to get work done. Make sure you have cash, though, as they don’t accept cards.
Special Interest: Expect a cute little panda image on your drink, depending on your choice of beverage!
Food: Coffee Spoune offer a great spread of continental European breakfasts, with breads, croissants, eggs, fruit, juice and, of course, coffee.
- Monday – Friday: 8am – 6pm
- Saturday – Sunday: 10am – 6pm
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Le Pavillon des Canaux
This spot only just made it onto the list, due to the expensive yet unappetizing drinks on offer. We included it simply because the decor is unrivaled in the city.
Le Pavillon des Canaux is a house located next to a canal, and is still decked out as a family home. If you can get a spot in the bathtub, it’s a surprisingly comfortable place to work!
Special Interest: The homely feeling of the place is worth the trip, but if you don’t fancy it during the daytime, visit at night — the alcoholic drinks are better than the coffee. Bear in mind, though, that as soon as cocktail hour (or lunchtime, for that matter) hits, laptops are no longer allowed!
Food: The onsite food options are expensive and not worth the money. Try Le Bellerive on the other side of the canal, and definitely go for the moules frites!
- Monday – Sunday: 10am – 12am
If you need to really focus, or have phone calls and meetings, then a cafe might not be the place for you. In that case, COWORKSHOP is a better choice — and after a hard day in the “office”, you’ll be in the perfect area for some of the best bars in town.
Special Interest: Visit Le Comptoir General for after work drinks and a vibe unrivalled in Paris — expect locals, loud music, and a very quirky environment.
Food: There’s a shared kitchen in COWORKSHOP, but if you don’t fancy bringing a packed lunch or cooking for yourself, you’ll have to go out for food.
Price: The “nomad” option allows you to pay by the hour or day — €4 per hour, €20 per day, €80 per week, or €220 per month.
“Resident” options cost either €360 or €1,200 per month, depending on whether you want open space or an office. There’s a small discount if you sign up for six months or more, but either way, you’ll get longer opening hours (including at weekends) and a a range of other services.
Hours (for casual use):
- Monday – Friday: 9am – 7pm
- Saturday – Sunday: Closed
Address: 29, rue des Vinaigriers 75010 Paris
Le 10h10 Clery
The atmosphere in Le 10h10 Clery is cool, creative, and welcoming, aimed at nomadic workers and entrepreneurs without a fixed office. Relax and get down to business surrounded by Le 10H10 Clery’s seventies vibe.
Special Interest: Find the turntable at break time!
Food: Snacks and tasty cakes are available for a quick sugar hit, and there’s unlimited coffee as well.
- Monday – Friday: 9am – 8pm
- Saturday: 10:10am – 8pm
- Sunday: 1pm – 8pm
Price: €4.50 per hour, €20 per day, €274 per month.
Address: 19 Rue de Cléry – Paris 2ème, France
Got other favourite spots to work in the French capital? Let us know about them in the comments!
All images via respective companies. Header image via Coffee Spoune.