Best Cafes to work with your laptop in Madrid, free WiFi!
The digital age did not always bring superb stuff to our lives, but undoubtedly one of the coolest aspects that we can all agree, is remote working. Weather you are a web or graphic designer, can work from home or simply are bootstrapping on your new venture, about 28% of all the working force, can nowadays just do everything with a computer.
I always found it so surprising how some huge places in which they invested loads of money still feel so cold, anonymous and just, unfriendly really. And then you come across this tiny cafe with 3 tables, a bunch of antique-shop-style decoration scattered around and it feels just like home. That’s the magic in the places we look for. Oh, and a smile!
So without further ado, here are the best spots I have personally tried for you in the last 3 years.
The quality of the WiFi, friendliness of the staff, amount of natural light (yes, you do actually need at least some), prices of the general picks you might want to order and level of silence vs business were just some of the factors I took in consideration.
Jardin Secreto Salvador Bachiller [Google Maps Link]
Ironically, this is actually a suitcase shop! That’s the beauty of it, it’s generally not too full, because if you don’t really know there is a bar on the 3rd floor and rooftop attic, then, you don’t really go! This is the flagship store of a Spanish luggage company, the building was actually so big (and probably the location so good) that they decided to open two different bars in it. A traditional british tea house can be found on the third floor and is the best place to avoid the city hubbub. Calm, nice mellow music, cute waitresses and you get some delicious delicatessen with a coffee or tea.
On the rooftop, the large green terrace full of fresh plants and leaves is a different story. The string Mohito craving you get by just stepping up here is pretty inexplicable, but, during spring or fall, this could also be a great spot to work outdoors (for those of you that are smokers. Quit! it’s not good for your teeth!). Try to avoid 1pm-4pm and 7pm onwards as the terrace might get busy or they could need the tables for people that eat.
La infinito [Google Maps Link]
If you are romantic, go here. In a narrow cute street of Lavapies, you can find this poetic calm corner. Good music is a big ingredient of the experience here. I really hope you are not one of those that goes and works in a bar with earphones, so you are completely isolated from the whole world and declaring war to anyone who might eventually connect with you. Anyways!
First of all, you can enjoy a live music show with amazing performers while tasting a complete and delicious brunch every sunday. But work a bit first. La infinito has very honest prices, around a third of Starbucks, like any Madrileño cafe actually. The service is ok, the owners are not the smiliest folks out there, but overall the whole experience is great. Avoid lunch and dinner hours.
Careful though. You can stretch this recommendation a bit. I usually go around 10 or 11 and then stay until I am either the last table available or almost. What I do though, is I simply delegate the responsibility. I just ask the staff to warn me when it’s time to go, when there are more people that wants to eat, as I dont want to be taking their table, just with a coffee. They appreciate this empathy, so they will be nicer and warn you in case you don’t feel when it’s time to hit the road.
You might wonder, but were do I go with no wifi, if all the cafes get busy for lunch?
You eat man! Bring your tupperware box and sit in a bench and nourish yourself, or locate a cheap menu del dia (menu of the day) and just have a 45-60 mins break. If you are human, you are likely to have been staring at your small monitor without getting up and stretch for 3 or 4 hours straight. You deserve it, yes, don’t feel guilty. A normal 2 course lunch with a drink and maybe coffee is generally 7-8€ in Madrid center.
If you see many for 14 or 20€, well, yes, that’s because you are a foreigner, so you don’t know better. But hey, now you know, better uh?
Martina Cocina [Google Maps Link]
Now this is a special one. As mentioned above all places provide high quality on the basics: plugs, good signal and time unlimited connection. But Martina Cocina is special, for the natural light. It is a narrow long cafe, with healthy good food and many honorable mentions to Argentina. Yes, Martina is from Buenos Aires.
The large window-doors allow fresh air (also essential) and ton of light enter the whole place. It is also facing a square, therefore there is a ton of light in general. The cafe is very comfortable over all, many use it as a remote office/second living room, so you will also won’t feel too much of an alien neither.
Saturday they offer a fun small brunch for a great price. Careful with Sundays, as this is central Rastro area, so you might be overwhelmed with the people all over and sure MC will be packed.
Frida [Google Map Links]
Ahhhh…. Chueca! One of the most elegant, trendy and stylish parts of Madrid. Few know that in the 90s locals were almost afraid to walk in this area, given the very high level of prostitution and drug dealing that took place here. Give a district just 2 decades and wonderful things can happen. Now this is one of the most expensive real estate areas of Spain!
Frida, former Bon Vivant restaurant, is located in a small alley. There is no way you could possibly just pass through here. You must come here on purpose. There is a large outdoor area (if you got a good battery ;) and overall, tons of light, good music, big open area. In the warmer months they fold up all the glass doors so the interior part magically mixes with the outside part.
The convenient Chueca Metro Stop leaves you inside the cafe basically.
So that’s about it. Not a list of 25, I feel you, but I prefer to give you only the very best.
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Hope you enjoyed! till the next one!