Neighborhood Spotlight: the Bean Bar

East Village’s Bean Bar is a trendy off-campus coffee bar and an ideal study place.


With midterm season quickly approaching, more students are buckling down and trying to focus on their studies.  Although the University of San Diego offers many beautiful and quiet study areas, studying on campus can be distracting. Whether it be a noisy roommate, seeing a friend just as you were about to begin reviewing your notes in Aroma’s, or the temptation of a midday nap, sometimes getting off campus for a couple hours can provide a focused and isolated environment necessary for effective studying
If you are someone that is looking for a daytime (it’s only open til 5pm) study spot off campus, try checking out East Village’s Bean Bar. This new coffee house offers delicious, hand-crafted beverages along with an ideal studying atmosphere.
Although the shop is small, it is never overcrowded or too loud.
The coffee shop is decorated with local artists’ work, wood tables and panels, and succulent terrariums hanging from the walls, giving it an artistic and organic atmosphere. The floor to ceiling windows in front allow for natural light to fill the space, too. With plenty of seating, the Bean Bar is very cozy and welcoming.
For those whose love for coffee goes beyond taking pictures of latte art to post on Instagram, you will appreciate Bean Bar’s high quality, ethically sourced “49th parallel” coffee. 49th parallel coffee beans are custom and specially roasted coffee beans from Vancouver, Canada. For others who are not coffee drinkers, Bean Bar has partnered with Coffee and Tea Collective as well as a local bakery to serve tea and savory pastries. If you are looking for a good cup of coffee or tea to keep you energized while studying, Bean Bar will not disappoint.
The Bean Bar keeps up with their artsy atmosphere with their coffee art. When you order in at the Bean Bar, you’re coffee, latte, or mocha is delievered with a design in the foam made by one of the baristas.
Freshman Kennedy Avery studied for finals last semester at Bean Bar, and spoke of how she enjoys its location in East Village.
“Bean Bar’s location is secluded because it’s away from the hustle and bustle of the city but it is still not in a desolate center,” Avery said.
Another great aspect of this coffee shop is that it is just steps away from the new San Diego Central Library downtown. The library provides free parking for two hours and charges $1.25 for every additional twenty minutes. The library also serves as a productive, off-campus studying area, offering numerous study rooms, many of which include amazing views overlooking the city. During a study break that will not distract you too much, you can check out the library’s intricate rooftop architecture, peruse its vast collection of books, or visit its own art gallery.
Freshman Michael Cappella recently went to the library downtown to study.
“I am always looking for new places to study,” Cappella said. “I get bored of always being in Copley or in the dorms. The San Diego Central Library was a really cool place to study. I enjoyed the different spaces available, including the group study rooms and variety of seating tables overlooking the views downtown.”
As midterm season is just around the corner for most USD students, getting off campus  and out of the library without being distracted from your studies does not seem to be a very realistic idea. Luckily the Bean Bar and San Diego Central Library offer the best of both worlds during this stressful period of the Spring semester.
If you have an itch to get off campus but do not want to feel guilty for neglecting your studies, consider making studying a little more appealing by going downtown to study in the spectacular new library, grabbing a cup of coffee from Bean Bar, or enjoying both.