The Camera Café – haven for the electro-nomad

If you’ve ever wandered the streets of London, MacBook in hand, searching for somewhere with adequate wifi, decent coffee and a generally chilled out mood, look no further. I present to you the “Camera Café“, a tiny hideaway on Museum Street, almost in the shadow of the British Museum.

“Camera” has the most awesome downstairs space, which has the glorious characteristic of being entirely out of mobile-phone range, something that turns from worrying to soothing in a surprisingly short space of time.

The choice of music demonstrates a respectable sense of aesthetic, including the likes of Buena Vista Social Club and 1930’s legends, The Inkspots. Should you find yourself in a moment of creative obscurity, the ground-level camera shop proves as fascinating as it is compact.

With relief leaking out of me like steam, I can reveal that the coffee at Camera works for me. I went yesterday and had a caramel latté – not a brilliant concoction, but nevertheless smooth and useful. Juices, sandwiches and meals pad out the menu and the standard is high; even if it were not, the large number of baguetteries around-and-about will satisfy your hunger.

By the way, if you’re in need of free wifi in Central London, point your antenna in the direction of this contribution from Londonist – decent, but I fear, incomplete. For paid wifi, Multimap plots a huge number of hotspots on its maps.

I have to admit that I cannot think of another coffee shop so well suited to the electro-nomadic lifestyle as Camera. Someone ought to cook up some sort of directory… James Marwood (@labete) responded to a recent tweet on the subject, pointing me to The Table, in Southwark. Please add to the comments if you have any favourites of your own and maybe we can get a list going or something…

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3 Comments

  1. Posted September 16, 2008 at 11:01 pm | Permalink

    If you have a BT Openzone account then the cafe in the Tate Modern is good. On Whitehall, the Lord Moon pub is not bad. Very quiet in the morning and does decent coffee I understand.

    I really like the idea of a list. How best to present it? A hosted tiddlywiki with a tiddler for each location?

  2. Posted September 22, 2008 at 10:15 am | Permalink

    Thanks for the additions James. I’m not at all sure what the best way to present a list would be – could anyone edit it? How about a blog aggregator? Or maybe just an edited list. The two websites I linked to are useful, but they don’t really give you an idea of what are the best places to go if you’re an electro-nomad…

  3. Posted September 22, 2008 at 2:44 pm | Permalink

    I think allowing anyone to edit would be useful – would make it easier for it to be updated, although this would also make it susceptible to vandalism.

    How about using an existing medium, like Wikipedia? Or perhaps a site dedicated to this? Would give a good excuse to spend more time drinking coffee in pleasant surroundings 🙂