6 Berlin cafes and co-working spaces to escape the home office

6 Berlin cafes and co-working spaces to escape the home office
Freelancers gather to work in Cafe St. Oberholz in Berlin-Mitte. Photo: picture alliance / dpa | Kay Nietfeld
So much of public life has reopened in Germany this summer, but lots of people are still doing their work from home. Many of us are itching for a change of scene, writes Sophie Shanahan.

After months of working from home, I had got fairly fed-up with the only variation in my working environment being the move from my cluttered desk to the kitchen table. Now that indoor dining has reopened in Germany’s capital, albeit with the need for a negative Covid test or proof of vaccination, I have been taking every opportunity to escape my home office. 

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I have spent my week exploring some of the best cafés and work spaces around Berlin and drinking many an oat-milk Cafe Latte along the way. The city really has a lot to offer, from cosy, sofa-filled coffee shops to modern, industrial co-working spaces. I’ve put together a guide to some of my favourites, to show you that there really is a work space for whatever mood you are in. 

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St. Oberholz, Zehdenicker Str. (Prenzlauer Berg)

With a few locations across the city, St. Oberholz is a café-cum-workspace. In the Zehdenicker branch, you will find a modern looking coffee shop on the ground floor with great access to single tables, plug sockets and reliable wifi. There are also some really delicious looking cakes on offer. If you need a quieter space to work in, you can pay a few Euros to gain entry to the co-working spaces upstairs. These are really useful if you need to make video calls or prepare for a big presentation, and really replicate an office environment. 

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Laidak, Boddinstrasse (Neukölln) 

Laidak is a slightly less manicured choice to spend your work day in. This coffee shop slowly transitions into a bar in the evenings and has the feel of a cosy, low lit pub. There aren’t many plugs around, so make sure you come with your laptop fully charged if you need it.  The feel of the café is really relaxed, so the staff will generally leave you alone and not mind if you want to while away a few hours working there. Laidak is fairly social, so it may not be the best choice if you want a table all to yourself – be prepared to share your space a little. 

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Geschwister Nothaft, Sonnenallee (Neukölln)

Directly opposite the Sonnenallee S-Bahn station you will find the Geschwister Nothaft café. The word COFFEE is printed three times in giant letters above the entrance, so it is pretty hard to miss. The café is vast and inviting, with sofas, communal tables and even school-style single desks to work from. The staff here clearly know that this is a favourite spot for freelancers and students, as there are plugs and extension cables throughout, as well as free wifi. The coffee and food here are great selling points too, and you can easily find vegetarian and vegan options. There’s no need to feel uncomfortable staying here for hours on end, just make sure you buy a drink or a slice of cake every now and then.

The Visit, Adalbertstraße (Kreuzberg)

The Visit has a number of branches across the city, from Charlottenburg to Kreuzberg. The Adalbertstraße coffee shop is a little tricky to find at first, as it’s tucked back from the main street. It is worth seeking out though, especially if you want a traditional coffee shop atmosphere to work in. Your nostrils will be filled with the smell of roasting coffee beans as you get down to your daily tasks. Luckily the place is filled with plugs and comfy chairs so that you can relax into your working day. You’ll most likely be surrounded by lots of other people tapping away at their laptops, and it seems like a real favourite for local freelancers. 

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Huadou Soy Concept Store, Linienstraße (Mitte)

This is a slight wildcard, and you may be a little intimidated by this café when you first come across it. The whole idea of the Huadou coffee shop in Mitte is that every item on the menu in some way embraces the humble soybean. From soy lattes to brownies, and even soy sauce ice cream, this is somewhere to head if you fancy a bit of an adventure during your working day. The café is pretty laptop-friendly, and the whole shop is minimalistic and beautifully designed. Not only can you get some work done in a serene environment, you can also try some of the cafés culinary creations throughout the day. 

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Coffee Circle Café, Lindower Straße (Wedding)

This café is probably one of the best to work in if you’re a real coffee lover. They roast their own coffee here and have an almost endless list of beans and roasts to choose from, as well as a selection of pastries and cakes. The shop is airy and bright and there is loads of space, so you’ll rarely be stuck for a table. There is even a dedicated area upstairs for people working on laptops. There are also lots of outdoor tables to work from on a sunny day, and the atmosphere both inside and out is always pretty laid back, so it shouldn’t be too hard to get down to work. 

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If you are looking for any other work-friendly spaces in your area, the website Laptop Friendly shows all the best cafés for getting some work done in the city. You can filter the results by whether there is wifi, if there are lots of plugs around, and even how loud the environment is.

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