5 downtown study spots for trendy coffee-lovers and hotdog enthusiasts alike

With the new semester well underway, grab your books and head to these trendy homework spots.

Looking for a new study spot that isn't the campus library? Managers and shop owners at these five restaurants in downtown Phoenix encourage all ASU students to stop by, grab a bite and study away. 

Each place offers a variety of different food options to curb any student's appetite and provides an atmosphere that's perfect for a stress-free study session.

Phoenix Public Market Café

The Phoenix Public Market Café is the closest of the five restaurants. Being only one block from Taylor Place and the Downtown Phoenix campus, it gives students the option to pick up their backpacks and take a quick stroll to a new study venue. 

General Manager Drew Decker said the café welcomes everyone, especially students.

“We are all about having a good relationship with ASU, so we encourage students to come in,” Decker said. “We do a 20 percent discount and we have outlets on the walls. It’s definitely conducive to studying when it’s not busy.”

Decker said the café is community driven. It’s someplace people can come in and feel energized. He recommends espresso and a slice of chocolate cake to pair with a study session. 

Lux Central

Lux Central is a large café located at Campbell and Central Avenue, a few light rail stops away from campus. This café offers more than the traditional espresso and scone, including creamy mac and cheese, whoopee pies and more.

With a large open seating selection, Lux has a place for everyone to sit.  After walking in, students will find a surprising number of open rooms complete with outlets and tables for group studying.

Lux is a hipster's playground, with an eclectic mix of industrial and ornate furniture. The reclaimed wood tables and unique music always playing makes for a ultra-trendy vibe . Everyone is mingling, while the workers tend to their customers. Lux Central can be loud and hectic, but its atmosphere is energizing, especially for students who are ready to work.

Lux is open from 6 a.m. to 12 a.m., Sundays through Thursdays and is open until 2 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. With its late hours, students can stay up late enough to finish some last minute homework.

Desoto Central Market 

Desoto is a food hall style market, housing a full bar, 5 separate vendors and a coffee shop. There is a variety of food offered at Desoto from simple croissants to elaborate burgers. The market doesn’t have traditional servers or hostesses — it’s all counter service and open seating.

Bartender and manager at Desoto Rae Dugan said she is excited to see the student’s from ASU, some she recognizes from last year, and some that are new faces.

“A good number of our customers are students and we love that,” Dugan said. “Every time ASU is back in season, we are very happy to have them here.”

Students can come in and open their laptops to have a coffee or breakfast snack. 

Every vendor in Desoto has also designed all their menus to be sharable. Dugan said the best thing to get with your study group is the poutine or the hot sauce cauliflower.

“The poutine from the burger joint is a must,” she said. “It’s a southwest smothered, house cut fries topped with cheese fondue, jalapeños and bacon.”

The market is located on the corner of Roosevelt Street and Central Avenue.

Lola Coffee Bar

Lola Coffee Bar is a quaint little shop located just a few blocks away from the Roosevelt and Central light rail stop. Despite being a little out of the way and having a smaller menu than the Taylor Place Starbucks, the quiet, warm atmosphere is enough reason for ASU students to make the trek.

Lola offers several coffee and food choices, along with lemonade, ice tea and fresh orange juice, and is located on N. 3rd St. right next to Pita Jungle.

Short Leash Hot Dogs

Short Leash Hot Dogs makes its home on Roosevelt, right down the street from Roosevelt Point. Short Leash is a full restaurant, offering signature hot dogs and dinner entrees. There is even an option to buy fresh donuts made from a fluffy brioche dough.

General Manager Brittany Dover said she is excited for the new school year, and she can’t wait to see students on their study break.

“There’s a sweet spot between our lunch and dinner rushes that would be perfect for students to carve out a little study time,” she said. “Between 2 – 6 p.m., approximately, are the best times to find a comfortable space, grab a leisurely bite and chip away at school work.”

Dover recommends the “hand-rolled, from scratch, donuts” and cold brew from Press Coffee “for the extra pick me up” to pair with any study session. 


Reach the arts reporter at alexandra.k.myers@asu.edu or follow @akmyers2asu on Twitter.

Like The State Press on Facebook and follow @statepress on Twitter.


Get the best of State Press delivered straight to your inbox.