Best cafes to work and chill in Bandra and Khar!

I live in Mumbai and Bandra is actually one of my favourite areas to explore, especially on weekends when I am always on a lookout for a place to sit, drink coffee and work. Though I actually started writing the this post about best cafes in Bandra where one could actually work, but it has now expanded to all cafes which are perfect for hanging out with friends as well.

Why Bandra?

Well, Bandra close to home and is also home to some of the best and chilled out cafes of Mumbai, which makes me feel at home there.

But how does one go about finding the appropriate work cafes there?
Well, online search is one way, but I often find cafes through recommendations from friends as well as my followers on Instagram and Twitter

This isn’t a list based on some scientific methodology, and is purely based on what I like in a cafe, especially a cafe where you can work. Good coffee, relaxed ambiance, good music, and wi-fi are certainly a must-have for such a cafe. It’s also not a fixed list and I will keep adding to it as I explore more cafes and fall even more in love with Bandra. I’ve also included Khar, which is a neighborhood of Bandra because they are really close to each other and share some common vibes.

I have no included chain cafes (at least the big ones) like Starbucks and Cafe Coffee Day, and have focused on more unique cafes which offer something more than just coffee.

But before I move on to the faces, here's something really interesting that I read sitting in one of these cafes below - a book called 'Coffee Life in Japan' by Merry White. She talks beautifully about the context of a cafe in the life in the city, but also something ubiquitous across the world - a melting pot where the night dwellers come after partying all night but before they go home, and the early morning office goers who come there to start their day. Mumbai, though often referred to a city which never sleeps, isn't exactly there as yet, but I think the coffee culture in the city is growing and Bandra is leading among all neighbourhoods. So yes...Yo Bandra!

Best cafes to work and chill in Bandra!

So without much ado, here are my recommendations for the best cafes to work and chill at Bandra. This is an organic list and will continue to grow as I explore more and more places.

1. Birdsong - The Organic Cafe

Working hours: 9:00 am to 11:30 am

Let’s start with the cafe which is one of my personal favourite in the city. It was Shivya who introduced me to this place and ever since I’ve been coming here often. In fact I've introduced this cafe to many of my others friends too and everyone so far has loved the place!

Birdsong cafe in Bandra
Some muffins! :)

What’s great? The coffee is good, but what’s even more interesting is that the place has vegan options to most of the items in the menu. This means a lot for vegan travellers, plus the vegan food is super tasty!

I love sitting by the window of the last table and working. I occasionally look out and watch the life passing by.

Outdoor seating: No
Books to read: No

Wi-fi: Yes

Pro tip: There is a lovely shop, Lila, just across the street where you can do some shopping too. It’s fairly expensive, but I still quite liked it. You can go there for some window shopping too!

Address:
Shop No. 1-5, Jenu-Jenai, Off. Hill Road, Waroda Road
Bandra West, Mumbai, Maharashtra 400050

2. Bombay Coffee House

Working hours: 9:00 am to 00:30 am

I discovered this cafe in in Bandra on a lazy weekend surfing online for cafes, and actually my search that day inspired me to actually write this story because it wasn't that easy to find a lost of cafes which are actually good for working.

Entrance to Bombay Coffee House
Trying to work!

The charging point is available only on the table with bar stools, so if the plan is to work use those. I actually sat by the table next to the window and charged my laptop first and then worked later on.

Outdoor seating: No

Books to read: No

Wi-fi: Yes

What's good? Though, I didn't eat their breakfast, it's a popular brunch cafe on the weekends.

Pro tip: Though it's a decent place to work, during meal times it's fairly noisy. I would suggest spending time here either early morning or after lunch time.

Address:
248, New Kamal Building,
Waterfield Road, Bandra West
Mumbai, Maharashtra 400050

3. The Bagel Shop

Working hours: 8:30 am to 11:00 pm

This was a place suggested on Twitter when I asked for recommendations for cafes in Bandra and it’s my favourite of them all. I was by myself that day and wanted to work like a focused beam of laser, but the day turned out quite differently. I met up with people from across the world on their community table, got introduced to this new app called Layover, went out shooting with new people and had a fantastic Sunday.

Entrance to the Bagel shop
All the food at the Bagel shop!
Avocado bagel!

Did I work? Not at all...at least not that day. The next visit was great too, but I focused on work and got it all done.

Outdoor seating: Yes

Books to read: No

Wi-fi: Yes

What’s great? If you are vegetarian, try out their avocado bagel and strawberry smoothie - it’s a divine combo!

Pro tip: If you stay long enough, you will see TV stars or even film actors walk in and sip coffee, or discuss scripts. It’s certainly fascinating for an outsider to get exposed to that side of life.
Address:
No.30, Pali Mala Road
Pali Hill, Mumbai, Maharashtra - 400050

4. La Folie Lab

Working hours: 8:30 am to 11:00 pm (Saturday-Sunday till midnight)
La Folie Lab isn't exactly the typical cafe, but a food and dessert place which also serves some good coffee. It's a creation by French trained Sanjana Patel, and the place does have a French feel to it. Unlike her other creations, this one is small and deliciously black and grey in decor.

Outdoor seating: No

Books to read: --

Wi-fi: --

What's good? The desserts are great and are a perfect combination with your coffee.

What's not: The place is expensive and you are likely to feel the pinch on your wallet.

Address:
Shop No.1, Libra Tower
70, Hill Rd, Opp. Saint Peters Church
Bandra West, Mumbai, Maharashtra 400050

5. Blue Tokai

Working hours: 8:30 am to 10:00 pm

Let's start with their story first - "When we moved to Delhi in 2012, gone were the local roasting shops we had frequented in Chennai. While the beans they provided may not have been terribly fresh, or even all that flavorful, they at least made a drinkable cup of coffee. In Delhi, we found our options were limited to pre-ground mass produced coffee or overpriced, imported beans that were roasted months ago."

Entrance to Blue Tokai
Very inviting interiors - cool with good wi-fi
Yum! But I was too full to try it out :)

They are relatively new in Mumbai and operate out of a small and a modern looking space right in the heart of Bandra. In fact Yoga House and Blue Tokai are walking distance from each other, and if you plan to spend your day (like I do sometimes) hopping cafes, these are perfect neighbours.

Outdoor seating: Yes

Books to read: No

Wi-fi: Yes

What's good? They are known for their freshly roasted and brewed coffee. Have a bagel with your coffee for a perfect companion as you work. They have vegan options for most of their coffees - you can take either soya or almond milk. I find the place to be also very reasonably priced.

Address:
Shop No. 1 Mayflower Building
33 New Kant Wadi Lane, Perry Road,
Bandra West, Mumbai, Maharashtra 400050

6. Village Shop

Working hours: 8:30 am to 10:30 pm

The first time I visited Village shop was dinner and it didn't come across at all as a coffee and work place - I loved it though and decided to come back again for lunch on another day.

Guess what, though small, the place packs a punch. The green surroundings are a relief on a warm Mumbai day, and the really delicious food actually adds to the overall experience.

Outdoor seating: Yes

Books to read: No

Wi-fi: Yes

What's great? I think the food here is great, even more than coffee.

Pro tip: They serve some good Vegan food, so if that's important to you, this is the cafe for you :)

Address:
53 Serpis Villa, Chinbai Road
Next to St. Andrews Church
Mumbai, Maharashtra

7. Yoga House

Working hours: 8:00 am to 10:00 pm (Monday closed)

Yoga House is actually a place which teaches Yoga, and the cafe is actually a part of it. It's located on one of those inner lanes of Bandra, and you can miss it if you are not looking for it - when you go there the first time, look for the faded green building - it says 'Yoga cafe' in Hindi.

The Yoga House

The ambiance is one of the most welcoming among all the cafes mentioned - there is no air conditioning, but the place is still genuinely cool. There is only one word to describe the feel of the cafe - earthy. Coffee is good too! There is, of course, free wi-fi and it's actually quite decent.

I love the seating here!
And that's me working :)

The cafe has two levels and both are great to sit. The one on the big balcony above is a community table and if you are alone, sit there and make new friends. Or help out a traveler - many of the patrons are people from outside India and can do with some tips.

Outdoor seating: Yes

Books to read: Yes

Wi-fi: Yes
What's great? This is a House to learn Yoga, and if you are interested in learning Yoga, this is a place to do that. They have courses that you can join, as well as retreats that you can be a part of. 

Pro tip: It's closed on Mondays, so make other plans if you intend to work that day. Also, the place is expensive (a smoothie costs Rs 300) so it's good to know before you go :)

Address:
Nargis Villa, Water Bungalow
Sherly Rajan Road, Near Rizvi College, Opp ICICI Bank
Bandra West, Mumbai, Maharashtra 400050

8. BAD cafe

The last in the list, at least right now, is another cafe that I am yet to experience though I did visit them just to have a look at the space. What intrigued me the most about the place was the fact that last year they won the prestigious Golden A’ Design Award in Architecture, Building and Structure DesignCategory by the International Design Academy.

Living up to the reputation of the award, the cafe is quite a stunner from outside. It's primarily black (that won my heart already) and the bold and wavy facade in a narrow lane of Bandra truly makes a statement. It's even more black from inside and I was so tempted to at least have a cup of coffee there, but after three cups already in the day, I didn't want to overload my system.

That's some facade!
They love their coffee for sure :)

Outdoor seating: No

Books to read: Yes

Wi-fi: Yes
What's great? Since I haven't tried out their food, I can't talk about that, but the ambiance of the place is truly unique and interesting. It's a bit dark, but sitting by the large open window with a book or laptop would be nice

Pro tip: None right now.

Address:
Kapadia House, 22G, off Perry Cross Road,
42, New Kantwadi Rd, Bandra West
Mumbai, Maharashtra 400050

9. Pali Village Cafe

Tucked away on a narrow steers on Pali Hill, the Pali Village Cafe is easy to miss. The sign outside is barely visible, but for the guard who sits outside. It looks small from outside, but do not worry - it's pretty spacious from inside.

Though ideal to work during the day, I would not recommend coming here to work during meal times. There is no community table or nice seats for single person, so you will have to sit and work on the bar stool during busy hours.

Pali Village cafe
Coffee time! :)

The basic coffee is reasonable priced (₹ 170), but most of the food is expensive. Keep that in mind when you come here and work.

Outdoor seating: No

Books to read: No

Wi-fi: Yes
What’s great? There is a huge menu of food and drinks (including wine), and it’s a lovely place to get drunk with friends too.

Pro tip: to reach here, don’t use the google map - it will take you close by, but not exactly there. Map or ask for Riddhi Siddhi, and this cafe is right next to it.

Address:
Plot No:602, Dr BR Ambedkar Road
Pali Naka, Bandra West
Mumbai, Maharashtra 400050



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