I must admit, the Bonifacio High Street – Serendra strip is a bit pricey, but the atmosphere conveys such a relaxing tone to your spirit that I wouldn’t mind spending the extra bucks lounging around. Here are two observations of the best places to chill with a computer: The Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf has an ample amount of wall plugs, and the staff allows you to plug in your laptops without charging. A Different Bookstore would have been another good choice to park yourself in for some mobile computing, but they have sadly started charging you for plugging in computers.
Should restaurants charge you for using their power outlets?
Although I feel that it is the right of an establishment to charge for these things, I have strong opinions too on why they shouldn’t. For one, I don’t think the cost per KW hour of electricity is a lot for a laptop charger. With food being priced at least 100% above operating cost (correct me if I’m wrong), having a laptop friendly restaurant should be a marketing tool used in today’s society. Any restaurant that charges for electricity should be seen as a scrooge and backward with the times.
Back in Paranaque, the local Mocha Blends branch at President’s Avenue is packed with people till about 2 or 3AM. That’s on a weekday. The staff allows people to plug in their computers and even has a stash of extension cords available upon request. The end result is that the place has become a haven for WiFi warriors, law students (the staff has an easel and pen which they provide these types of customers for study groups) and the late night crowd that are allowed to stay on outside even when the restaurant is closed. Isn’t that great? With these small gestures from the staff, they have managed to build a community of regular patrons!