Cafes. Who doesn’t love them? No matter if you’re a freelance journalist traveling the world documenting important events or on your way to work feeling the need to stop for a cup of coffee, we’re sure you have your favorite spot somewhere, and that spot is a nice cozy cafe.
The whole thing began around the 15th century in the Ottoman Empire and then in the 17th century it spread around Europe and soon enough America followed the trend. Cafes, or coffeehouses back then, were popular meeting places for debates, and were frequented by bohemians, intellectuals and artists alike.
Today, their main role hasn’t changed. They’re spread all over the globe and used by most of us to meet friends, relax and enjoy a good cup of coffee or a snack, but as well by artists and freelancers who need a more bohemian atmosphere to get inspiration for their work.
Some cafes are little humble cozy spaces while others can be a lot more than that. Here are the Top 10 Most Luxurious Cafes in the World:
10. VOGUE Café, Moscow
Since its opening in July 2003, VOGUE Café in Moscow was a remarkable success combining classical European cuisine spiced up by Russian influences. With a stunning interior design, white tablecloth, lovely flowers and crystal glassware, this cafe evokes class and style.
Each dish they serve there is cooked by competent chefs from the freshest ingredients available, with some even offering signature dishes as well. One such example is the Russian “Olivier” salad which combines salmon with black cod baked in a bamboo leaf. Sounds like a delicious experience, doesn’t it?
9. Oriole Café, Singapore
Orchard Road in Singapore has one of the largest concentration of malls in the entire world, so you can bet that that’s the place to find one of the most amazing cafes in the world.
It’s called Oriole Café and it provokes your senses right from the entrance, when you start noticing its aesthetic, coffee texture inspired interior, with wooden panels, dim lights and an alfresco area as well. Their menu offers a great selection of coffees, some wonderful breakfast options, good pastries and signature brews.
8. Antico Caffe Greco, Rome
Opened in 1760 in Rome, Antico Caffé Greco is currently the oldest bar in the city and the second oldest in the whole Italy after Caffé Florian in Venice. Since you might wonder, the initial owner was a Greek, hence the name Caffé Greco.
The cafe has now a history museum feel about it after being visited across time by various personalities like Stendhal, Goethe, Lord Byron, Franz Liszt, Casanova or Morrissey to name just a few. When you set foot in this place, do remember that you’re in for an entire cultural experience, so expect prices to be a little bit more spicy than in your favorite coffee spot at home.
7. Grand Café Gambrinus, Naples
Naples has its own historic landmark in the world of coffee with Café Gambrinus, founded in 1860 and situated just behind the Palazzo della Prefettura. It used to be the gathering place for the intellectuals and the artists of the Belle Epoque. The interior is a dazzling testimony of that period.
The legendary name Gambrinus comes from a vast European culture that tells stories of beer and brewing, cheerful, good-natured living. It’s a symbol of that joie de vivre some keep talking about.
6. Emporio Armani Cafe, Dubai
Emporio Armani Cafe is a luxurious coffeehouse located in one of the biggest malls in the world, the Dubai Mall. The design follows a simple and elegant line, creating a modern-chic interior and a relaxing atmosphere in the middle of an otherwise crowded place.
The food menu is, as you might expect, expensive and Italian. They bring the taste and dishes of Italy into Dubai, priding themselves with sweet tomato homemade breads, croissants, pizzas and pastas as well as with fresh soups, salads and gelato.
5. Roberto Cavalli Café, St. Tropez
Roberto Cavalli café in St. Tropez is one interesting place that offers a large selection of traditional Italian dishes in a diverse and complete menu which can accommodate clients from breakfast to dinner. Add a DJ during the evenings and they already become a lot more lively than at your usual coffee place.
The venue has an interesting interior design with a curved steel counter contrasting with the wisteria tree in the center. There’s also a terrace with chairs and sofas covered in zebra and giraffe prints. And if that isn’t enough, you also have the option of purchasing gifts like chocolate boxes, the Cavalli Tenuta Degli Dei wine or the Roberto Cavlli Vodka.
4. Café de la Paix, Paris
Located inside the InterContinental Paris Le Grand Hotel, designed by the distinguished architect Alfred Armand, Café de la Paix is such a popular place in Paris that if you sit long enough at a table, you’ll soon spot a friend there. Or so they say.
It was opened in 1862 and throughout its long history there were a lot of personalities that have walked inside. Some of the names are Emile Zola, Jules Massenet, Sergei Diaghilev, Guy de Maupassant or King Edward VII of England. Since 1975 it’s a historic site declared by the French Government and again, given its rich cultural background, expect to pay around $85 for a brunch there.
3. Bulgari Il Café, Tokyo
Il Café, the only coffeehouse of Bulgari is a great place with a stylish and luxurious yet informal setting located in the famous Bulgari fashion house in Omotesando, adjacent to the Bulgari jewelry and watch shop.
Il Cafe offers the classic Italian character and a great menu selection plus a refined ambiance and a quality service. And speaking of the menu, you’ll find nothing traditional there, as they have quite a few interesting signature offerings. The prices are interesting as well, but hey, it’s Bulgari.
2. Bloomsbury Café, Dubai
The Bloomsbury Café in Dubai is a boutique café with a twist. It’s as well an artisan bakery and they pride themselves with the biggest cupcakes in the area. Shafeena Yusuff is their main culinary connoisseur and he’s in charge of providing a unique dining experience, trying to integrate the aesthetic of the British shop into the UAE.
The setting has an artsy theme with dark walls and background which makes the sugar bowls, teacups and cupcakes displayed stand-out. They offer some uncommon cupcakes as well, infusing them with edible gold. But since we’re talking about gold here, expect prices around the sum of $1,000.
1. Café Florian, Venice
Café Florian, as mentioned earlier at number 8, is the oldest and most luxurious cafe in the world. Established in 1720, it still functions today both as a coffeehouse and a museum, hosting a private collection of artworks.
During its early days, it was the only coffeehouse to allow women inside and as you can expect, some of its visitors in the past were personalities such as Lord Byron, Marcel Proust or Charles Dickens.