We’ve mapped out Vancouver’s most work-friendly coffee establishments so that visitors and locals alike can get their stuff done while sipping the good stuff in great environments.
— in alphabetical order (ranked by readers at bottom) —
Beyond the good coffee, we love this place for its seating variety (communal, corners, lounge, windows, and more) and the fact that it’s also home to Lucky’s and its delirium-inducing PB&J doughnut.
Located in the industrial netherworld of Clark Drive between Venables and Hastings, this tiny underground roasting house has a sunny communal table that makes for a good working hideaway.
Delicious baked goods, cozy seating, a great atmosphere and excellent coffee combine for a solid gotta-do-stuff environment (if you can tune out all the good conversation going on all around you).
With over two years now under its belt, this attractive, well-lit space has proven to be a consistent winner on the food front (mostly healthy and hearty snacks and sandwiches) and the bean execution (Bows x Arrows) is proper.
We love the beans produced by this Vancouver Island roaster, so we were stoked to see them open a cafe/restaurant here last summer. The long communal table makes for good brunch hangs. Wi-Fi hours limited.
The second location of the original East Side fixture is in the heart of the South Granville shopping district. Always an interesting mix of beans (Timbertrain and Anchored at the time of writing). Great window perches.
A local chain that found success where every cafe ought to, not in slick branding and moustache wax but in consistency and excellence. This small outpost – attached to the Opus Hotel – has a sophisticated traveller’s vibe to it.
A specialty doughnut shop at the foot of the nicest residential building on Main Street, dishing wondrous doughnuts like Canadian Whisky Bacon, Chocolate Triple Threat, and Earl Grey. Beans by Elysian, so you know it’s good.
An Elysian joint with wifi? Yup, the other three locations might still eschew the trend toward Mackedness, but their newest outlet is umbilically attached to the Burrard Hotel, and what is a hotel cafe without wifi? Rejoice!
Located away from the Main Street crowds, this ancient neighbourhood corner store-turned cafe serves good beans from Bows x Arrows and some downright delicious treats. Good spaces to work and people watch in the window.
One of the more charming and atmospheric spots on this list. Good meeting spot, though it has the power to remove idle hours from your life if you’re not careful, so boot up and concentrate. Pro tip: baguette sandwiches are legend.
Occupying the glassed-in prow of the flat-iron building at the junction of Main and Kingsway. Lots of plugs, strong wifi signal and satisfactory coffee with plenty of distractions. Aka: Gene Pool.
If there were a model for how we’d like all neighbourhood to operate, Greenhorn would be close to perfect. Part art gallery, part record store, part coffee bar, it’s the full package. Bonus: good granola with vanilla-spiced pear.
The city can count boast many locations of JJ Bean, but if you’ve got some work to do none rival the communal, co-working atmosphere of the one on Main Street. Lots of space. Lots of good, constructive energy amplified by caffeine.
A swell Mt. Pleasant hangout that attracts a representative cross-section of the neighbourhood with a cozy variety of living room-style seating. Always buzzing, but never too distracting. Serious about their beans. Good pour overs.
We prefer to sit outside in a cozy chair and tether for wifi here rather than join the crush inside. On top of the good coffee, they serve outstanding toasted croissant sandwiches layered with ham and cheese.
Local coffee roaster and baker with killer design sense, highly efficient service, and lots of variety when it comes to seating (communal, window cloister, banquette, high-top). Want to spike a cup? They’re also licensed.
Tucked sufficiently away from the Gassy Jack tourist track to almost always guarantee a free seat, this bright, reliable and work-friendly joint has a deep menu of house beans and a slick but comfortable modern European design. Hours are easily well spent here.
This new addition found instant success on account of the quality of their beans and the cozy, modern-meets-industrial look and feel. If you ever find time to lift your head from your laptop, the window perches make for awesome people-watching.
The reliable bicycle-themed cafe moved out of their Chinatown digs last year and into this Ste. Marie-designed stunner directly facing onto the Burrard St. bike lane. Beans are from Phil & Sebastian and local roaster Pallet.
Housed in an open concept heritage space and doubling as a bakery, this is one of the better looking cafes in the city (and probably the most aromatically alluring). Avocado toast + Matchstick beans = good working environment!
This newcomer facing Victory Square is one of the biggest surprises of the past year. Not only is very easy on the eyes with a superb coffee program, but the food is also shockingly good for a coffee shop – perhaps ‘best in class’ for Vancouver.
This looker is recessed deep on the West Side and makes for a good interlude between home/work and hikes in the Endowment Lands. They make plenty to snack on and grind beans from East Van Roasters.
A good-looking neighbourhood cafe that roasts its own beans behind a glass partition. A little off the beaten track but well worth repeat visits on account of their evident and delicious dedication to quality.
There’s a great little window bar to work on while sipping well made coffee drinks (beans from Origins Organic Coffee) and snacking on tasty baked goods from the Swiss Bakery. Flies under the radar on quality wings.
The 3rd location of this local chainlet is the best of the bunch for getting work done (as evidenced by the daily invasion of Macbooks). Plenty of space to spread papers out and sip on your 49th Parallel espresso. Bonus: electrical outlets.
We use owner-operated Propaganda a lot both as a meeting place and a midday caffeine re-up station. Great selection of beans and seat options, from communal tables and lonely deuces to window hightops and lounge seats.
This is our regular go to for a number of reasons, starting with the attention to detail paid to every cup that’s made to order. It’s also beautifully designed, offering a mix of tight booths, window seats, and a lengthy communal table. Killer bean selection, too.
We’re suckers for their scones with jam and clotted cream (also the bechamel-heavy chicken pot pies), but for a double shot and a solid work sesh it’s definitely our main port of call in Yaletown.
The seating is a bit labyrinthine and tricky to suss at first, but you’ll figure it out (it’s one of the 1,000 coolest things in Vancouver). Definitely one of our favourite cafe interiors in town. Bonus: excellent beans.
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