As a remote worker coming to Cuenca, looking for the best coworking Cuenca hotspot to do your work from is probably high on your research list. Is the coffee free? How much does it cost? How’s the Wi-Fi? Are there any perks to membership?
I’m Capture Joseph and I recently put together a full YouTube documentary called ‘Co-Working in Cuenca’, but before that went live, I visited each of the four main coworking spaces here to do a tour and an interview. I don’t want to say I’m an expert on the best coworking Cuenca options, it’s just that nobody else is as interested in this as me or has done as much investigating.
Let’s get to know the best coworking Cuenca options…
Coworking Cuenca: The Pioneer
Let’s start with the original, the OG of Cuenca’s coworking scene. Way before remote work and coworking spaces were as glamorous and glamorized as they are now, Coworking Cuenca opened its doors. There’s no doubt that this was the pioneer, and for that, it deserves much credit. I did a trial day here and used the time to update my iOS system, as the wifi was fast and stable.
My primary reason for not signing up here is the location. It’s scenic, but it’s quite far from the centre and away from any sort of good food options. For a very budget-oriented coworker who likes a nice walk before and after work, this place is ideal.
Coworking Cuenca Fast Facts
- Name: Coworking Cuenca
- Price: $40 per month unlimited, up to $250 for a dedicated office (top floor with a terrace and river view)
- Where: Av. 27 de Febrero, on the Yanuncay River
- Coffee: Free!
- Wi-Fi Speed: 50MBps
- The number of desks: 3 freelancer spaces and 6 private offices
- Kitchen facilities: Yes
Additional information: Partnered with TEDx Cuenca for certain events, offers photography services, has a roof terrace, is quiet and out of the centre, and is the cheapest space in Cuenca.
La Ofi: Luxury Furnishings & Lightning-Fast Wi-Fi
The new kid on the block in Cuenca. Launched around Valentine’s Day in 2022, there is bound to be a lot of love with this luxury workspace. For me personally, it’s probably the best coworking Cuenca option purely for the quality. The seating, the desks, the toilets, the meeting rooms, the call booth, and the cafeteria are all fantastic.
At the time of writing, it is just a month old and so it hasn’t got many members yet, making it feel a little quiet at times. I’m absolutely sure it will be a big success once the word gets out. Getting their deal listed on the Yapa Tree card will surely help in that regard. I expect in the near future there will be networking events, intercambios (language exchanges), board games events, and who knows what else to make it more well-known.
La Ofi Fast Facts
- Name: La Ofi Work Center
- Price: $80 – $260 depending on the package
- Where: Simon Bolivar 14-36
- Coffee: Black coffee is free, lattés and cappuccinos incur a cost but they supply farm fresh milk
- Wi-Fi Speed: 93MBps (fastest in Cuenca)
- The number of desks: 45-50
- Kitchen facilities: Yes, with other things for sale like beer and cakes
Additional information: The Audio-Visual studio sets La Ofi apart from other coworking spaces, and comes fitted with a green screen and a black screen. The private offices, of which there are two, are a bit small for my liking. There are three amazing meeting rooms to make use of.
Selina Hotel: Quality Co-Living in Cuenca
Selina Hotel is different in that it’s primarily a hotel and the coworking space is secondary, or even tertiary, as they have a nice bar and regular events to think about too. Despite not being the focus, it’s a really nice office and absolutely the quietest of the four coworking spaces. Whilst the other three are all on busy roads, Selina’s working area is at the back of the hotel on a terrace hanging over the Tomebamba river. No car noises or foot traffic to drown out your workflow.
The Wi-Fi could do with an upgrade, and there’s only one private office space (first come first serve basis I think), but aside from that, it’s hard to find fault. Moving forward, this is likely to be my coworking space of choice for the one day a week when I force myself to leave the house. The reason is more for the perks for membership, as it gains you free entry to much of the nightlife, the yoga classes, and discounts on many things, like workshops and hotel bookings.
Selina Cuenca Fast Facts
- Name: Selina Hotel
- Price: $100 per month (or $75 with the Capture Joseph discount)
- Where: Calle Larga (big pink hotel, you can’t miss it)
- Coffee: Free!
- Wi-Fi Speed: 7MBps
- The number of desks: 20 hot desks with a private meeting room & skype booth
- Kitchen facilities: Fully-equipped kitchen and dining room with terrace
Additional information: Dorms the ($270pcm) and private rooms ($450pcm) make this an impressive co-working space. There’s a pizza restaurant, a craft beer bar, foosball, pool table, multiple terraces, a cafe, workshops, themed events and so much more to enjoy.
IMPAQTO: Biggest Community & Seating Options
I was a member at IMPAQTO for one month. It was a largely enjoyable experience, with great facilities, rapid Wi-Fi, comfortable seating, and a beautiful green panoramic view of the Tomebamba River. The seating is a big thing. There are two levels, sofas, ergonomic desk chairs, simple comfy chairs, an astroturf, comfy armchairs, soundproofed calling booth, and padded benches.
Noisy coworkers and competition for good seating encouraged me to look for somewhere less-subscribed. I’m also intolerant to cucumber and the only drinking water is a decanter of cucumber water they make each day. You can’t win them all.
It’s a great indicator for the future of Cuenca’s coworking scene that there is a shared office so full and popping.
IMPAQTO Fast Facts
- Name: IMPAQTO
- Price: $100-170 per month depending on the package
- Where: Av. 12 de Abril, on the corner of Parque de la Madre
- Coffee: Free (and very good)
- Wi-Fi Speed: 80MBps
- The number of desks: 43 hot desks and 15 private offices
- Kitchen facilities: Yes
Additional information: Part of a group of 5 IMPAQTO offices; the other four are based in Quito and the IMPAQTO passport gives you access to all of them. If you want a free trial day, ask for the lovely Andrea ‘Angie’ Mogrovejo and tell her you know Capture Joseph.
Best Coworking Cuenca: The Verdict
The truth is that there is no ‘best’. My best and your best may be different. If I had a small budget or saw coworking itself as a luxury, then Coworking Cuenca’s $40 a month would be a steal and I’d see that as the best. If I wanted to feel like a member of something bigger and more fun, with curated events for digital nomads, I’d say Selina Hotel is the best. If I wanted luxury, great design, and an audiovisual space for content creation, I’d say La Ofi is the best. If I wanted a community and a place to network, IMPAQTO would easily be the best of the bunch.
The great thing is, they all offer a free day (tell them Capture Joseph sent you), and you can do a 1-month deal at all of them too, there are no pesky long-term contracts. La Ofi will give you 10% off your first month with a Yapa Tree card and Juan Espi at Selina Hotel will give you $25 off your monthly membership if you mention Capture Joseph. Great deals await!