Cafes, coffee shops or whatever you want to call them have changed not only in look and appearance but also the way in which we use them over the last couple of decades, it’s a fact.
The idea of a cafe or coffee shop was an area where members of the public could meet, buy and drink coffee, it was that simple. The first coffee shop was recorded to have opened in Istanbul in and around 1555, and in the coming years, this form of business began to spring up in many Middle Eastern countries and areas including Mecca, Damascus and Egypt.
These places were used not only to drink coffee, but to meet with friends publically, play board games and similar amusements as well as discuss news and politics. In this sense the idea of the coffee shop has not changed but in recent years we have seen these public establishments being used for more.
This change runs parallel to our working habits as well as the increase in the advancements of technology. Now, when you go into a cafe and look at those who are seated at the cafe tables, we can not only see the family that have come for a break from a shopping spree or two friends discussing each other’s love lives, but we can see the telecommuter that is using the cafes free Wi-Fi to catch up with work or run over notes he has made prior to an important meeting with a client. The inclusion of Wi-Fi in a lot of these cafeterias and with it being made free to the public or customers to use, it can now be used as a place of work away from the desk.
So with café environment being a place of not only leisure with areas within it being kitted out with sofas, tub chairs and other forms of soft seating, it’s also being used as a place of work with the office chair and desk being replaced with wooden café tables and cafe tables. Where is the next evolutionary step going to take us? Could we see cafés providing public beds for “daynappers”? Or maybe it will replace our settees with more and more people choosing to watch TV there as opposed to at home? I guess the answer lies only in the future.