If the past 12 months has taught us anything, it’s that we can be flexible about our workspaces. But sometimes when out between the office and home it can help to be aware of your options. In a city like Sydney, that means knowing the cafes best suited to work stints along with other options for spontaneous productivity, from suitably relaxed libraries to flexible co-working spaces. A spot where all you need is your laptop.
Whatever your need, these five spots will make you feel so cosy you’ll be in no rush to head back to the office, home or anywhere else.
State Library of New South Wales
It might date back to 1826, but the State Library of NSW has expanded several times since opening and now features a bunch of modern, quiet workspaces. The multiple reading rooms are ideal for hunkering down in, and feature unlimited wi-fi alongside the added option of self-service printing, copying and scanning. There’s also a handful of study rooms that can be reserved for individual work (although you’ll need a library card for that). Convenient fuel comes from on-site cafe Trim, which serves seasonal soups alongside sandwiches, slices, smoothies and coffee.
Well known in Melbourne and Brisbane, Industry Beans has a Sydney foothold in a heritage-listed sandstone building on York Street (near King Street). Between its streamlined fit-out conceived by Design Office and a focus on speedy service, it’s a top destination for losing yourself in the day’s tasks while still remaining within reach of house-roasted specialty coffee. The soy cold-brew bubble cup nods to both bubble tea and iced coffee, while the food menu makes inventive use of that same touchstone ingredient, from a coffee-rubbed Wagyu burger to fruit sashimi that comes finished with coffee caviar.
Art Gallery of NSW Cafe
Nestled next to the Royal Botanic Gardens with views of the harbour, the Art Gallery of NSW is teeming with works from Australia and around the world. Admission is free, which means you can browse the permanent galleries en route to its bright and casual cafe, where you can graze across local seasonal produce during the course of your workday (or a more succinct stint). The cafe is open 10am to 4pm, with extended Wednesday hours until 8.30pm. If you’re needing to meet with a colleague or host a client, this is a vibrant, stylish no-fuss spot.
Paramount Coffee Project
Greeting visitors in the foyer of the impeccably curated Paramount House, Paramount Coffee Project welcomes a flood of natural light into its Art Deco backdrop of polished surfaces and soaring ceilings. Thanks to the involvement of Melbourne coffee roaster Seven Seeds, PCP heroes a rotating lineup of international beans and roasters, with a robust food menu that ranges from the healthy to the indulgent. There’s plenty of seating to be had, and the building’s priceless selection of other tenants means you can treat yourself to a post-work movie at Golden Age Cinema or a wine at Poly.
Space & Co
Flexible workspace provider Space & Co has three locations around city, including Parramatta and Rouse Hill, but its flagship space is in the bustling commercial tower at 580 George Street. With a stated mission to keep its offices spacious and bespoke, Space & Co caters to both bigger groups and industrious individuals, and comes complete with private suites. The prime location also means you can go directly to or from Town Hall train station via a pedestrian underpass. You can get a day pass from $50, while longer stays give you a chance to style your space to your liking. However long you want to stick around, you’ll enjoy access to custom-built workstations, ergonomic office chairs and space for plants and other extras.
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