The Field Office: Stay as long as you want

If you happen to work from home or you’re lucky enough to be able to take your work for lunch, if you’re in the market for a new laptop friendly wifi spot or if you’re just looking for coffee in a new place, you should find the corner of Barrack and Harrington street. Put simply, go the The Field Office.

It’s is a peaceful, creative place, perfect for when you’re uninspired or just tired of your surroundings. What makes it so collectable, is quite simply, the space. The Field Office is at the top of a quiet street and much more spacious inside than your average wifi spots – these tending to be rather small and swarming with caffiene hunters. The coffee is good too, and so is the music.

A sure perk of having a big space, is that one can really choose where to sit. At The Field Office, however, you can choose at which type of table or on which type of chair you’d like to sit, too. There’s the classic counter-type-table-by-the-window that looks out over the street. The harder the rain comes down, the better it is to sit here. Then you have a range of smaller tables, some square some round, scattered in the centre. And then, against the far wall, you’ll find the rectangular 4-6 seaters, complete with nifty narrow benches, where a group can talk business or design or friends could hang out. Since the furniture is light coloured wood with white, and since the ceilings are high, it just feels like a good place to be in.

There is something even better about the tables and chairs though, a hint being that some are exhibited on a raised are in the middle. They’re the products of Pedersen & Lennard, furniture designers from Cape Town and incedently also the guys responsible for The Field Office. Those unique stools that look like cushion filled steel buckets on legs are for sale and so are all the other tables, chairs, benches and even the lights. It might be strange to think that you are having your lunch in a store, but what better way to browse furniture than to actually use it?

There’s more though. It’s not only a furniture store. Inside you can also browse and/or buy handmade accesories and home decor from Bow-Peep. If you’re a button fan, you’ll love her stuff. And visit her blog for a proper dose of pretty. Then there’s sterling silver jewellery from Dear Rae. These are elegant but authentic. Perfect too wear out but not too shiny. You’ll also find the rad tshirts from She and Him as well as products from Margot Molyneux.

Well worth mentioning to, is the extensive exhibit of the Chapel backpacks. These are made out of canvas and have leather straps and detail, making them durable and charming at the same time. And seeing as it truly is hard to find backpacks that don’t have a zillion zips or look like you’re on your way to climb a mountain, I am personally quite a big fan.

So what is there to consume? The Field Office has all the usual hot drinks but served in thin, vintage (generally mismatched) cups and saucers. (They have juice too.) If you happen to be around these parts between 7.00 and 9.00 on weekday mornings, you will even get a coffee at the old price of R10. As times have changed, so did the prices, unfortunately.

The Little Bakery supplies all the lovely sweet treats while Will, the manager, is the sandwich king, proudly producing his fresh and yummy sandwiches. These, in turn, are served on miniture wooden cutting boards, complete with the whole on the one side.

There is one more thing that really contributes to the space. The mural. The back wall is almost solely dedicated to a massive black and white aerial shot of Cape Town with a 2014 World Design Capital message. Together with Creative Cape Town, the Field Office is supporting Cape Town’s bid to receive this prestigious honor. You too can support the bid by getting a badge or stay in the loop by joining the Facebook page. This is yet another thing to make Cape Town cooler, and to let the world hear it too.

The Field Office welcomes all who seek an office away from the office. They like it if people hang around and have meetings. The wifi is free (as long as you don’t download movies and such). There is food. It’s an exhibition space for local designers and the products are pleasing to have around. It’s about the space, not the coffee or cake. But it does help that these taste pretty darn good. Earlier this year The Field Office held an auction of vintage bicycles, so keep an eye on their website or twitter for any future events. But go there, take your mom for coffee or your book out for shortcake. They’ll love it.

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