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Here for the Vibe

Here for the Vibe

There’s no doubt mouthwatering food and a banging cocktail will take you far, but if you want to feed your soul as well as your stomach, you might be looking for a spot with a little more "somethin’, somethin’"... Well, we’ve done the vibe check for you and rounded up our top spots that will have you wanting to linger over a second coffee… or margarita!

Coffee on Ascot

Coffee on Ascot, Palmerston North

Tucked away in Hokowhitu, the friendly Coffee on Ascot is full of light, plants and self-proclaimed “good vibes, as touted in the neon lights above the counter. Sink into the worn leather couch or sit at the window bar with a great coffee (made using locally roasted beans) and a tasty slice from the cabinet – note the charming, mismatched tableware. If you’re a remote worker, this tastefully decorated coffee shop might just be your new favourite “office”… Coffee on Ascot is also passionate about sustainability, with eco-friendly practices implemented at every turn so you can leave feeling light of heart and conscience.  

 boho Cafe

Boho Cafe Palmerston North New Zealand e1685498996378

It’s all in the name at Boho café. Velvet armchairs overflowing with cushions and a sign that reads “Gypsies & Cowboys Welcome” greet you before you get to the front entrance and the bohemian décor keeps on giving as you walk through the door. The food cabinets are a work of art in themselves with every tasty offering thoughtfully arranged and decorated - you really do eat with your eyes first! What sets this spot apart, however, are the happy dogs laying under every second table. Doggy treats and Puppachinos are advertised alongside the human fare and every furry friend is happy to be at Boho. Happy dogs = the best vibes 

Alexander's Patisserie

Alexander's Patisserie, Coleman Mall Palmerston North Manawatū

Compromise on a trip to the city of love with a skip across Te Marae o Hine - The Square to Coleman Place instead. Take in the splendour of Alexander Patisserie's’s sweets cabinet – is there anything prettier than rows of brightly coloured macarons? - before finding a table outside under the cherry blossoms and enjoying a leisurely tea or double espresso, perfectly paired with an almond croissant. 

Gingerbird Café

Ginger Bird Cafe, Colyton, Manawatū

This hidden gem is absolutely worth a detour if it doesn’t feature on your daily commute. The the cosiest country coffee spot around, Gingerbird Café began its life as two shipping containers but is now a unique hot spot for locals to catch up and soak in the warm friendly atmosphere. Enjoy a freshly baked cake, cheesy scroll, or decadent gourmet pie on the patio area or cuddle up inside with the homey décor as you savour one of their amazing coffees to warm your soul. 


munch header

If you need inspo for a gallery wall, then put Munch in your diary for your next brunch spot. With an eclectic array of art as far as the eye can see, and bespoke details throughout, this is the place to come if you need a more creative vibe. Choose some booth seating – always a winner – or get a bird’s eye view from up on the mezzanine. The floor to ceiling mural tops the vibe off with trendy, youthful spirit and with a menu that is entirely gluten free, this is the only certified celiac friendly dining spot around, and its menu won’t disappoint with its array of flavours, dishes and delights. 


Barista cafe, Palmerston North Manawatū

Tucked in on the coolest street in Palmerston North, Barista is a café by day and bistro by night with their coffee machine running till late. Choose a table on the street and people watch or enjoy the sights and sounds of the café and those that frequent it. Most notably, an entire wall at Barista is completely covered by an incredibly detailed hand-painted mural – try spot all of your favourite literary characters as you sit and enjoy your coffee or wine (they can pick a good one!). 

Artisan Kitchen Café

Artisan Kitchen Cafe, Caroline's Design and Desire, Palmerston North Manawatū

Take a drive through Aokautere to the beautiful property at Caroline’s Design and Desire and enjoy the opulence in the luxuriously furnished barn, turned cafe. Surrounded by a whimsical English-style garden, this café is perfect for a Sunday brunch when you have time to linger over your food before exploring the gardens and well-stocked boutique store to find that special something or pick up a gift. 

Freddie Clere

Freddie Clere Story

Set up in the old Baptist Church, Freddie Clere gets a head start on vibe with its exposed brick walls, high beam ceilings and stained-glass windows, and you can’t help but feel a bit saintly as you walk up the steps to head inside. In a bit of a contrast to the building’s history, Freddie Clere feels fun and youthful once you are inside, with quirky names for each bagel option and always-cheery staff. Iced lattes are a popular beverage here, along with their smoothie selection. Indoor seating is limited but cosy – or on a nice day nab a table (or beanbag) outside and enjoy the sun. 

Beaver and Bear

Beaver & Bear Canadian Restaurant Manawatū

If you’re looking for something extra unique – check out Canadian restaurant, Beaver and Bear. They’ve committed to the theme, with Buffalo check cushions, travel posters from Toronto to Nova Scotia decorating the walls and bear motifs throughout. Visit on a Saturday morning for a hearty breakfast in their tucked away patio area or book the booth for dinner and chilli margaritas all round. Choose from their legendary poutine, pierogies, and fried chicken or tuck into the chicken and waffles, burger selection and more. 

Tony’s Pizza

Tony's Pizza restaurant

Step into Tony’s Pizza, walk past the vintage PlayStation set-up and past a group of friends in their second hour of playing Catan. At the end of the room, you’ll find pizza by the (giant) slice, craft beer on tap and a friendly face behind the counter. Once you’ve ordered, head to the shelves filled with every game you can think of (from Connect Four through to Cards Against Humanity) and take your choice back to your table for some fun and good food. Tony’s Pizza vibrant décor and fun, energetic atmosphere is definitely a vibe! Craft beer, gin and the best pizza this side of New York – what more could you want?


Libre Mexican Restaurant Palmerston North Manawatu

Blue velvet, Frida Kahlo and a bar that looks straight from Baz Luhrmann’s Romeo and Juliet, Libre is exactly the kind of place you want to hide away in for a couple margaritas with the girls. Libre delivers on great Mexican fare and smashing cocktails, from classic tacos and chimichangas, through to patatas gravas and Jalapeño poppers, you’ll be spoilt for choice with the traditional cuisine offerings on offer. So, if you’re looking for a night out with a vibe – make sure to head to Libre! 

Have we missed your favourite vibey spot?
Let us know on
Palmy & Manawatū on Instagram (@manawatu_nz).

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