Sydney’s Stores and Boutiques with Cafes
Who doesn’t love a multi-tasker? At some stores around Sydney, you can browse for clothes, books, homewares and furniture, and then sit down for a coffee – all without leaving the four walls of the shop. It’s a brilliant concept: not only is it a smart business move, giving people another (appetising) reason to visit the store, but it’s also convenient for weary shoppers, and those who’ve scored a highly coveted parking spot out front.
At these stores, retail therapy comes with foodie fuel.
Part Malaysian café, part clothing store, Café Rumah in Surry Hills is a must-visit. Upstairs, the boutique – called 15 Sheets – stocks a carefully curated selection of labels, like Weekend Offender and Pointer Footwear. Downstairs, the café buzzes with loyal locals. Try the pork belly rice bowl, Asian Cuban sandwich (it often sells out), or the smashed avocado, topped with nori and an oozy egg.
71-73 Campbell Street, Surry Hills
To transport yourself to Paris for the afternoon, head to Parterre. After adding everything in the boutique to your wishlist (think homewares, furniture and ceramics handpicked from Europe, plus lush plants), decide whether you’d like to dine in the glasshouse or rustic courtyard. Whatever idyllic setting you choose, tuck into a tartine and finish off with a slice of cake courtesy of Brickfields.
33 Ocean Street, Woollahra
When you walk into this converted terrace in Glebe, you’re greeted with three floors of wall-to-wall books – and that’s not an exaggeration. There are thousands of fiction, history, culture, music and secondhand books to forage through. When you’re found what you’re looking for, settle into the courtyard café, which hosts open mic nights and turns into a wine bar after dark.
51 Glebe Point Road, Glebe
For coastal-chic homewares, furniture, garden wares and gifts, go to Alfresco Emporium. The Collaroy location is more than just a stunning store; it’s a shopping destination, with a florist, children’s play area, and café. On Tuesdays, the café serves high tea from 10am-2pm and 2pm-4pm, where the fig and mascarpone tarts are a highlight. Bookings are essential.
1021 Pittwater Road, Collaroy
Top tip: Love the idea of sipping wine while you shop? Pop into East Coast Lounge, a Hamptons-style homewares store on the water in Mosman.
If you’re searching for one-of-a-kind designer armchairs, colourful cushions and custom lampshades, Armchair Collective has you covered. The Northern Beaches gem is known for its vibrant homewares and furnishings, and its sunny courtyard café beckons after a successful shopping trip. It serves lighter and more substantial meals – our pick is the homemade sweet potato gnocchi.
9A Darley Street East, Mona Vale
Alexandria is an interior design hub, and Coco Republic is at the heart. The showroom is bright and spacious, and styled with pieces from the brand’s own range and big names like Ralph Lauren and Jonathan Adler. It’s also home to the swanky Café L’Americano, which serves up Italian mains, piadinas (toasted sandwiches) and salads.
34 O’Riordan Street, Alexandria
On one of Bondi’s most bustling streets, Gertrude & Alice is the perfect hideaway: a place where you can sink into an armchair, get lost in a book (there are over 25,000!), and stop to sip chai or enjoy a meal. The crumpets are as nostalgic as the second-hand books, while the hearty lentil stew has been on the menu since day one.
46 Hall Street, Bondi Beach
After making a splash in New York and Japan, Saturdays opened its Aussie flagship at Bondi Beach – and it’s as cool as you imagine. The menswear brand has a retail-café model in all its stores, and in Sydney, local roaster Artificer supplies the coffee. Once you’ve stocked up on clean-cut basics, soak up the sun on the outdoor benches.
L08/180-186 Campbell Parade, Bondi Beach (enter via Gould Street)
Mud Australia Double Bay
The perfect pick-me-up after a day of shopping is a slice of cake. Nestled in a Double Bay backstreet, Mud Australia makes coffee breaks even more beautiful. It serves baked goodies from Flour and Stone on its handmade ceramic plates, while Mecca coffee comes steaming in pastel-coloured cups. If the flourless chocolate cake is on offer during your visit, it’s your lucky day!
Shop 4, 1 Kiaora Lane, Double Bay
Spread over three storeys in Paddington, Berkelouw’s a bookworm’s dream. With leather armchairs and sleek woods, it was inspired by European salons, where creatives would meet to discuss their big ideas. On the second floor of the store, the cosy Café 1812 takes cues from that. It serves breakfast, lunch and dinner, so you can savour both your meal and your book.
19 Oxford Street, Paddington
Top tip: If you’re book hunting in the city, there’s a great café tucked inside Dymocks on George Street. The all-day breakfast is second only to the beef pot pie.
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