Working From Anywhere? Check Out These Work-Friendly Cafes For Better Focus & Productivity

24 March 2022

The pandemic gave rise to a new form of default working arrangement - the work-from-home or work-from-anywhere arrangement. More and more employers are giving their staff the flexibility of working from just about anywhere, and this means cafes which are conducive for remote working have seen a huge uptick in popularity.

Commonly known as the "coffee shop effect", workers report an increased ability to focus on their individual tasks, partly due to the calming effects of background noise, the way our brain is affected by the change in environment, and the lack of co-worker interruptions.

Here, we take a look at some of our favourite go-to cafes when we want to escape the monotony of working from home.

1. Huggs Collective

Image credits: @gumballz81

Image credits: @tutumarshill

With more than 20 outlets spanning the island, Huggs Collective is a familiar sight to many, especially those working in the CBD. That said, their flagship outlet at Maxwell is their largest to date, spanning over 3000 feet with a members-only lounge and outdoor seating for those who prefer to be closer to nature. The cafe is also pets-friendly with plenty of space for your furry kids to roam about.

Opening Hours: 9am - 8pm (Wed - Thu), 9am - 9pm (Fri - Sun). Closed on Mon & Tue.
Address: 30 Maxwell Rd, #01-03, Singapore 069114

2. Genius Central

Image credits: @geniuscentralsingapore

Image credits: @ahqi_mamashop

Located at Telok Ayer and large enough to seat over 100 patrons, Genius Central prides itself on being a community to inspire entrepreneurs, change-makers and digital nomads. In addition to both high and low tables, private meeting rooms are also available for booking should you require more privacy.

There are plenty of power points available too. Work-friendly cafes seldom come friendlier than Genius Central.

Opening Hours: 8am - 8.30pm (Mon - Thu), 8am - 9.30pm (Fri & Sat), 8am - 4pm (Sun)
Address:  7-13 Amoy Street Far East Square, Singapore 049949

3. Runes Coffee

Image credits: @runescoffee

Image credits: @runescoffee

Floor-to-ceiling glass panels with natural light streaming in - safe to say that is what most of us envision when we think of the ideal cafe to do remote work in. And this is exactly what Runes Coffee can provide. This cafe is located at one-north and is immensely popular among the working crowd in the area.

To live up to its botanical theme, you will also find potted and hanging plants around the cafe. Perfect for those occasional breaks from staring at your computer screen.

Opening Hours: 8am - 4pm (Mon - Fri). Closed on Sat & Sun.
Address: 28 Biopolis Rd, Level 1 Wilmar International Ltd, Singapore 138568

4. For The People

Image credits: @allaboutveggie_msveg

Image credits: @allaboutveggie_msveg

Multiple power points check. Spacious and comfortable environment check. Central location check. For The People is located at Hamilton Road, an area known for its many cafes like Chye Seng Huat Hardware, Lola Faye Cafe and Wimblu Lu, to name a few.

For The People features a contemporary style decor with a minimalistic theme. There are window seats for those who work better with a dash of sunlight. They are also open from early till late each day, different from some of the earlier entrants which are closed on certain days of the week.

Opening Hours: 9am -10pm daily.
Address: 11 Hamilton Rd, Singapore 209182

5. Ambling Turtle

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Image credits: @bambooxginger

Another cafe with floor-to-ceiling glass windows, Ambling Turtle's name is an ode to the area it is located in, Katong, which is a species of sea turtle that is now extinct. The cafe features a simple but beautiful interior with an emphasis on wooden furniture. There are two storeys in the cafe, with the upper storey featuring work-friendly wide and long wooden tables.

Ambling Turtle specialises in Peranakan fare such as the Nyonya Curry Chicken ($6.50), Satay Chicken ($6.50) and Pulled Beef Rendang ($8.50), as well as sweet treats such as the Pulut Hitam Tart ($6.50), Ondeh Ondeh Cake ($7.50) and even a classic Pandan Waffle topped with Coconut Soft Serve and paired with Chendol Jelly ($12.50).

Definitely one to check out if you are in the Katong area, even if you are not looking for a space for remote working.

Opening Hours: 9am - 6pm (Sun - Thu), 9am - 10pm (Fri & Sat)
Address: 66 E Coast Rd, #01-01 The Flow, Singapore 428778

6. Twenty Eight Cafe

Image credits: @belleaccent

Image credits: @life.joanne

Located at one of the shophouses lining the street, Twenty Eight Cafe is a hit among students of the nearby Kaplan City Campus and School of the Arts, just to name a few. Aside from boasting a spacious area, the cafe is also well-known for their coffee, with some even claiming theirs to be one of the best in the area.

Opening Hours: 7.30am - 5pm (Mon - Fri), 8.30am - 6pm (Sat & Sun)
Address: 28 Wilkie Road, Singapore 228051

7. Mellower Coffee

Image credits: @mellowercoffee_sg

Image credits: @things2doinsingapore

Regular visitors to Bugis will know this place. Mellower Coffee is situated at Middle Road, in between the National Library and the Bugis shopping district. What most people do not know is that they are actually a coffee chain from Shanghai, with more than 50 outlets scattered across China, South Korea and Singapore.

There are two storeys in the cafe with plenty of power points located all around. Their menu also offers an extensive range of coffee brews and beverages to cater to all palates.

Opening Hours: 9.30am - 8pm (Sun - Thu), 9.30am - 9pm (Fri - Sat)
Address: 108 Middle Rd, #01-01 Bernhard Schulte House, Singapore 188967

8. Lowercase

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Image credits: @chocolateclustersbycrowyuzree

Seeing that Lowercase is located within the compounds of an education institution (Lasalle College), it comes as no surprise that it is hugely popular among students. The cafe is huge and airy with sunlight in abundance. Seems like a winner in our books already.

Opening Hours: 8am - 8pm (Mon - Sat). Closed on Sun.
Address: Blk D #01-01, 1 McNally St, Singapore 187940

9. City Sprouts

Image credits: Bui Bui Eats

Built on the now-defunct Henderson Primary School campus, City Sprouts is Singapore's first plot-share urban farm to bring gardening hobbyists and neighbouring communities together to experience agriculture and food.

The canteen features various food establishments with spacious seating, and a cup of coffee starts from only $1.50 here. Take your pick from cuisine choices like Hakka to Mexican, Western and Asian fusion.

Opening Hours: 9am - 9pm daily. Individual stall's opening hours may vary.
Address: 102 Henderson Road Sprout Hub, Singapore 159562

10. Wakey Wakey

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Image credits: @dailylife____saigon

Yet another cafe with floor-to-ceiling glass windows, Wakey Wakey is located at The Concourse which is only about 5 minutes by foot away from Nicoll Highway MRT Station. The cafe features European decor with spacious seating and abundant sunshine coming in through the windows on a sunny day.

Perfect for those who work better with sunshine.

Opening Hours: 8am - 5pm (Mon - Fri), 8am - 6pm (Sat & Sun)
Address: 302 Beach Rd, 05 The Concourse, #01-04, Singapore 199600

Remote working, or just about any form of working can be exhausting if our environment remains unchanged and our tasks get too repetitive over time. Changing the environment we work in haven shown to do wonders for an employee's focus, productivity and overall mental wellbeing.

Staying or studying in the west and looking for more cafes to explore? Check out our guide on Pretty Cafes in the West Perfect for a HTHT session here.

This is an independent review and information is correct at time of writing.

Photo by Tim Gouw on Unsplash