So what exactly is an 'anti-café'?
On my recent reconnaissance voyage* to France for our trip(s) there later in the year, I came across a concept that simply did not exist when I was living in Paris just ten years ago. Things move fast in the world's favourite capital, it seems.
Dodgy wifi was the bane of my life back then, despite brightly-designed signs in parks and other public places proclaiming 'Zone Wifi' everywhere. (As an aside, did you know Wifi in French is pronounced 'Wee-Fee'. This has always made me giggle. It's just a funny sound when you say it out loud.). While I may have been able to connect while sitting in the middle of Jardin du Luxembourg, what would have been even more useful would have been to have been able to connect reliably in the comfort of my own apartment. But those ten-feet thick ancient walls are sometimes hard to penetrate, understandably.
So what is this new concept? They're called anti-cafés and they are popping up all over Paris and the rest of France and the idea is just chouette*! Poor Starbucks (I never thought I'd write that phrase) had become known as the best place in Paris for free and (even better) reliable internet access. For the price of un chai latte au lait de soja*, one could while away the hours, booking flights, sending reports, downloading videos or just à tchatter* with friends around the world.
The anti-café has turned this concept on its head. Patrons pay an hourly rate for access to the anti-café's internet and then can help themselves to unlimited tea, coffee and soft drinks, as well as des délices sucrés*.
Check it out for yourself. Here's a start for you: https://www.anticafe.eu/
*trip | *great | *a soy chai latte | *chatting | *delicious sweet things