Urbana Coffee in Toronto

Cynthia Cheng

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Starbucks, The Second Cup and Timothy’s World Coffee aren’t the only game in town anymore.  In 2007, Toronto saw a new game in town.  Urbana Coffee, which currently has two locations in the downtown area (near Bay and Wellesley and and at Yonge, just north of Bloor) offers coffee and other drinks for a slightly lower price point.  In addition, unlike Starbucks and the Second Cup, Internet access at Urbana is complimentary.  However, Urbana could have more outlets for those of us who do not rely on batteries to operate our machines.

The fare offered at Urbana Coffee is standard.  There are the espresso drinks, the chocolate drinks (three types of hot chocolate, including one which is mint flavoured) and smoothies.  In addition, the coffee they serve is fair trade – Urbana attempts to be socially responsible (although they aren’t environmentally-speaking.  The hot chocolate I ordered was served in a disposable cup).  They also offer food – sandwiches, dessert and the like.  In addition, like many other coffee places, Urbana Coffee offers a debit card.  The difference between its card and others is that Urbana Coffee’s also acts as a discount card – users get 10% off each purchase.

A downside about Urbana Coffee is their lack of a website.  Yes, they have been in operation for more than 18 months, and they do not have a site.  A website is an important marketing tool, so even to have a splash page using a free web service would have been helpful.

The two downtown locations are: 1033 Bay Street (just north of Wellesley) and 878 Yonge Street (north of Bloor).

Comments

  1. As an Urbana Coffee regular, I am glad they don’t have a website for once the secret gets out, the queues will be crazy…

  2. ^^^

    Noticed that you’re from Australia. Do you have Urbana there, and is it the same chain?

    C

  3. Patricia says:

    Actually, their cups are made from biodegradable materials (corn NOT trees) and they always try to give clients who are staying cups and mugs.
    They DO have lots of plugs for laptops,far more than most cafe’s and it’s FREE so be thankful.
    Their drinks are great. I personally really enjoy the French Vanilla Coco as a hot drink and the Pina Colada (mmmmm….) for a refreshing drink.
    The Staff there is super friendly. They remember faces and sometimes upgrade your drink for free just because they know it’ll make your day. Don’t forget to tip them!
    Get the discount card! The discounts you get with it are great and more than worth it.
    Its great for hanging out with friends or studying. I actually dread the day they get a website because it’ll mean it’ll start getting packed.
    I used to work as a Barrista at Starbucks and I can honestly say they are WAY better in almost every facet of the business.
    I love this place!

  4. Sounds like a fantastic little spot, I’ll have to try it out next time I’m over that way!