On Saturday i revisited the park once again to read the Weekend FT and The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich. This time accompanied by a Freddo Espresso (the first this year) and a croissant from Arabica Coffee House (should have taken pictures of these as well!!!)
Category Archives: Coffee in Cyprus
Whenever i used to go past a packed coffee shop in Cyprus i wondered why would people pay EUR2-5 for a coffee. I’ve come to realise though that unless people invite you over to their home, you can’t get a cheaper form of entertainment or leisure than that. Not to mention that you have the opportunity to let your kids’ wrath loose on strangers for a few hours something which most parents do…..
I’ve been trying to come up with other forms of entertainment/leisure.
Dinner is definitely more expensive unless you manage to locate a good and probably obscure souvlaki shop. Of course you are paying for food and not coffee but it is still a matter of spending 2-3hrs outside your home. In this respect it is comparable.
Movies again more expensive (and don’t get me started on 3D movies) and there you depend on (a) quality of the movie but that’s mostly down to your selection and (b) the people in the theatre with you. My experience is that it’s more likely than not to be ruined by the latter.
I imagine you can go to a park like the one in Akropolis or Athalassa but unless you take beverages with you that’s still going to end up more pricey.
So, how can you be entertained outside your own home in Cyprus? Does it even cost less than a coffee at Arabica, Starbucks, Presse, Costa etc?
I love coffee.
It’s one of the highlights of my day. Particularly filter coffee. Grinding the beans and then enjoying the smell of freshly ground coffee. It’s one of the few things i don’t rush when making which is quite rare since i rush through most of the things i do. I use french press because it provides the best taste and it’s also the most practical to use when making just one cup.
I also prefer to drink filter coffee all year round if possible, depending on where I am of course and whether the temperature allows for it. Cyprus has become a bit more filter coffee friendly in the past few years with it’s numerous coffee shops which is a good thing.
What about you?
The paperback is losing it’s appeal. The convenience of the e-book reader and the decrease of its price added to the lack of space in the modern-day apartment has only sped up the shift from the physical to the electronic format.
However, there is one big advantage to the paperback. It can be shared. Coffee shops are ideal to promote this idea of sharing books.
I am suggesting that is a small stand or shelf where 2-3 used paperback books can be on “display”. People can then just pick them up and take them home to read. Ideally, the person can replace it with a book he or she has already then. I would even place a couple of books that i have already read and are still in my collection.
In fact, i have some books which i am trying to get rid of for some time now because i simply lack the space. I am not going to re-read most of them, so most likely i will put them in a box and then take the box to my store-room where it will remain untouched until the next time i run out of space.
So, if you know anyone who owns a coffee shop please ask them to do this!
It costs nothing to the shop apart from some limited shelf space or counter space. Then let me know where i can start placing mine. Maybe I’ll borrow and read a paperback once again in the process.
It’s an idea that’s been going round in my head lately after finding out about a boardgame cafe in Toronto, Canada. It’s called Snakes and Lattes and it’s a cafe with a collection of over 2.000 games which people can choose from to play.
The business plan is quite optimistic and aggressive as they charge CAD5 (EUR3.9) per adult and CAD2.5 (EUR1.95) per child. That’s on top of anything you drink or eat. That sounds quite a lot but it makes sense because you need to make sure you can cover the wear and tear of all these games. The cafe of course organises special game nights and also has recommendations for games of the week. It also sells a limited number of boardgames but i don’t think that’s an important revenue source. It mostly complements the service offered there and it provides the opportunity for people to try out different games and if they prove such a hit to be bought on the spot.
Snakes and Lattes first opened its doors in 2010 so it seems that its approach is working so far. Would an idea like that work in Cyprus? I don’t know. Because you are not only catering to a very small market (Toronto>Nicosia) but also a very immature market where board games are concerned. There are some cafes that cater to the pilota lovers or the occasional Taboo game but they don’t charge anything extra. So as far business plans are concerned these are just regular cafes.
By charging extra, let’s say EUR4 per adult you will have to compete with other forms of entertainment such as movies which cost EUR8 or going out for a drink. This means that it will be difficult to convince people that it’s worth paying for, especially now that everyone is a lot more cost conscious. Also, people are not aware of most of these games so you need to overcome the barrier of not only the idea of boardgames but also the learning curve of the individual board game. So, you will need to have someone there available to explain the rules of games to people that want to play. It’s actually something that Snakes and Lattes does but i am not sure to what extent.
So, to summarize:
- Small market for a niche service/product
- Even though you offering something unique you will still be compared to a highly competitive cafe market
- Immature board games market
- Expensive when compared to regular cafes and comparable to other night out options.
It does not look promising.
As it is highly unlikely that there will be enough people for 5-7 days a week what one could do is have the cafe open only on weekends and maybe on public holidays. At the same time though costs will need to be covered regardless of the number of days the cafe is operating e.g. rent.
It looks like a dead end, but maybe someone will pick up the idea and go for it. There is definitely no demand right now for such a place but could it be created?