Awesome Rent-Free London Work Spots
I have a confession. When it comes to my working environment, I'm more picky than the princess in "Princess and the Pea" and Goldilocks and her porridge. I cannot work where it's too dark, too noisy, too quiet, too "office-y", too busy... I don't even like staying in the same place too long, and I can't work from home. Needless to say, during my office-less times I've tried pretty much every space around in search of the perfect spot. Before your budget allows for a swanky membership club, these are a few of my favourite spots that are (almost) rent-free.
An achingly cool small chain unique cafe/workspace/hipster hangouts loved by freelances, creatives and guys with beards. Wifi and electrical sockets on tap, but you'll need to remortgage your house for the coffee (especially given the small cup size) but man, it is good coffee. And it comes served on a cute little wooden board with your own water jug so, y'know...worth it. The food is also fantastic, from super healthy salads to mouth-watering cakes and donuts for when you just need a creativity boosting sugar hit...
Top Tip: Early bird catches the worm, this place gets BUSY. Get here early to grab the best seats by the window, unless you don't mind the darker downstairs...
2. Campus London
Google's start-up community in Shoreditch (obviously) houses a free co-working area (read: glorified cafe). You have to be a member to get in but it's free to sign up, and you can benefit from the range of free start-up and community events such as yoga, talks, workshops and even demo days. Loved by start-ups (the cafe does have the obligatory table-football after all...) it can be an awesome creative, entrepreneurial hub to get you inspired.
Top Tip: Get here at 9am or risk not getting a spot, and remember cash for the cafe because there's a minimum card spend. Not the lightest or airiest of spaces, so maybe bring a daylight lamp with you to avoid feeling like dracula by 5pm.
3. Lululemon Regent Street (Neat Nutrition Cafe)
The upstairs of this Canadian activewear giant's new flagship on Regent Street is home to the Neat Nutrition cafe. A bright, airy, sleek cafe and lounge area with free wifi, a large table (with electrical sockets!) and bean bags so comfy you could even have an afternoon nap. The cafe serves a range of healthy (of course) food, snacks, coffee and smoothies to keep you fuelled for a day's work. Keep your eyes peeled for fitness bloggers, celeb trainers and instagram stars popping in and out!
Top Tip: Shut your eyes on the way in to avoid a large hole in your bank account
Ok so this one's not free, but it's still a good-un. With major co-working spaces pricing real start-ups out the market, AirSpace is literally a breath of fresh air. Just off Tottenham Court Road (and a new Soho site just opened), it's a beautiful light space with marble, comfy sofas, coffee and (of course) the mandatory co-working beer on tap. There's a variety of options from hot-desks to dedicated desks at prices that won't mean you're living off soup.
Top Tip: It's not advertised on the website, but you can pay a day rate for £18...which, let's face it, you'd probably spend on coffee elsewhere anyway.