Caffeine Fuelled Relaxation around Campus
There’s nothing I like more than the opportunity to sit down in a coffee shop with a warm drink, time to spare and a good book in my hand. I always find the faint background murmur reassuring (even when my headphones are in) and enjoy the sense of community that a coffee at home simply can’t provide. Fortunately, Warwick has a wide range of places on campus but, as with all things, these were not all created equal.
Here’s my views on the best places to escape for a little while on campus.
1) NAIC cafe
As you head over towards Westwood and University House from main campus, you’ll probably walk past this spot and if you’ve never taken the time to stop in, Do it!
I took a long time for me to discover this cafe but ever since I have, it has taken some real strength of will to keep myself out. Even at lunch time, it never feels too hectic, its always comfortable and warm and in the evenings, if your stuck on campus between mid-afternoon and evening lectures, this is the perfect space to rest your brain.
Somewhat the flag ship cafe around campus, this has every right to that title. Whether you’re stopping in here for a chat with a friend, a quick coffee to go or for one of their fantastic selection of cakes, there’s not much to dislike about Curiositea.
I’d say that the only downsides for me are the fact that it sometimes lacks in space and the music doesn’t quite say peace and relaxation to me. Mostly though, I love to sit in here, right in the centre of campus still feeling a part of everything but also one step removed for a while.
3) University House Cafe
University House is one of those buildings that I knew nothing about for way too long. I assumed it was just an admin block full of offices and not really designed for students but now this is one of my favourite places to stop in on campus.
The study spaces are great and less crowded than the library but the cafe here is also a nice addition to the place as a whole. I often go over to University House to work but end up working in the cafe with a cup of coffee to keep me company rather than the study spaces. Either way, this is a great place to go to escape the bustle and hourly rush of central campus.
4) Cafe Nero
Now we may be getting a bit more expensive with one of the coffee chains on campus but Cafe Nero over in the sports centre is a surprisingly relaxing place. I quite like sitting looking out over the area out the back of the sports centre after going to the gym and if I’m getting stamps on my Nero card while I’m at it, who am I to complain? I didn’t think that I would like remaining in the sports centre when I’m trying to relax or be productive but Nero have got it right.
Also, I can’t wait for the summer when it’s warm enough to sit out in the outdoor seating area!
5) The Arts Centre Cafe
What I like about this one that the others don’t necessarily offer in the same way is that I almost forget I’m on campus and sometimes that’s just what’s needed. It very much feels like a public cafe in a public place (which it is) and I like that the opportunity for that escape is always right there opposite the piazza.
6) Pret A Manger
This one is simply not for me. I used to really enjoy the comfort that Costa on campus used to offer but I just don’t get the same feeling from Pret. It always seems busy (unsurprising given it’s just about as central as you can get on campus) and honestly, everyone seems in such a rush that it’s hard to relax in the cafe.
I love the food and drinks that Pret has to offer but I think that I would be much happier to grab something to go than I would be to sit in. This feels like a commuter spot in the centre of campus which is perhaps what people want and I’m sure it will come in handy one day.
Other than that, I think I need to do more exploring. Some of the cafes on campus I’m disappointed never to have tried. The Occulus cafe always frustrates me because whenever I try to get work done, the sugary smell of waffles is pure torture. Places like the humanities cafe always look nice as well but I’ve never had the opportunity to stop in. I do tend to get set in my ways and, at the moment, that means that if it’s not too inconvenient and I want a coffee, I’ll be heading over to NAIC for a while.