Being productive is difficult. In LA, it’s even harder. Most people work from home purely because braving the traffic isn’t worth the trip. By the time you make it to the coffee shop, find a parking spot, pay the meter and snag a table with a nearby plug, time has run out.
Don’t’ fear. After trying out a bunch of spots to get work done across the city, I’ve found a few hidden gems. Whether you’re working on emails, a script or editing a reel, having a place to focus is important. The following places are comfortable, convenient, and have an environment conducive to optimal levels of accomplishment.
Just at the edge of Hollywood, right at Franklin Village, is one of my favorite coffee shops. Bourgeois Pig is a jewel. It’s nestled next to UCB Theater and a tiny newsstand and always has plenty of space. Parking in the area isn’t too bad, with side-street parking available for free. I always love getting a Moroccan Mint Tea and snuggling up on one of their velvet couches. The tea can come for two, for those occasional work dates. There’s even a “jungle-esque” room in the back for anyone feeling adventurous.
Whenever I’m in Los Feliz, I always stop by Figaro Bistrot. It will make you feel like you’ve instantly been transported to Paris. Have an espresso and enjoy the mellow vibe inside or at an outdoor bistro table. They’ve got a stellar Happy Hour from 5-7pm and parking at meters nearby is always easy.
It may be cliché, but nothing beats hashing out an assignment at Intelligentsia in Silver Lake. Their El Gallo Organic Breakfast Blend has notes of pecan and milk chocolate. It always seems to somehow make the work more appealing.
For the night owls out there, Insomnia Café is the place to be. It’s open past midnight and extremely cozy. The Wi-Fi code comes with a purchase, but grab anything from a snack to a soda and you’ll be set. Bring cash.
Starbucks may be everywhere, but the one on Melrose and Stanley is special. It has a huge seating area outside and free internet. Most people are working alone which means concentrating over chatter isn’t a problem.
Another great place to work, which is open to the public, is the Writers Guild Foundation Shavelson-Webb Library. It doesn’t open until 11 am, so it’s not for early birds. It provides an inspiring atmosphere and is extremely quiet. If you’re doing work where other writing resources are needed, you will be surrounded by them here!
The benefit of working on the West Side is the beach. If you’re in Santa Monica or Venice, finding a spot where you can see the waves is always great.
The Cow’s End Café in Venice has the ocean at the end of the block and there’s always metered parking out front. They have great salads, omelets and build-your-own sandwiches. The staff is chill and friendly.
If working outside is motivating, definitely create your own station on the beach. There are tons of benches open from the Venice boardwalk to the Santa Monica Pier. If your computer has enough juice and doesn’t need Wi-Fi, working near the sand is incredible. Make sure you have a water bottle, sunscreen and quarters for metered parking.
A great spot in Santa Monica is The Novel Café. It’s a big space and most everyone there is focused. They have delicious organic options too for food and drink. You can take a break and walk around the shops on the block. There are unique boutiques as well as restaurants to wrap up any work.
Wherever you live, or end up for an afternoon, there are plenty of spots in LA to be productive!