The concept was conceived in New York, designed in Toronto and made in Cape Town and is known as Coco Safar. It combines the finest Michelin-star quality patisserie, baked goods and café style food, paired with world class Third Wave coffee and cold brew in a luxurious retro chic setting. The flagship store also features a freestanding espresso bar and the first independent retail capsule emporium of its kind internationally.
Coco Safar is the culmination of a lifetime of journeys and discoveries in the café, coffee, patisserie industries for the entrepreneurial visionaries behind this highly innovative, multi-sensory consumer experience.
Both creative and entrepreneurial at heart, Wilhelm Liebenberg and Caroline Sirois’ epicurean passion for a unique café experience that combines equally great food and coffee, saw them opening a string of cafés in Montreal, Toronto and New York as part of an insightful street level R&D process to shape and refine the business model and brand identity. “It has always been about excellence, authenticity and relevance”, says co-founder Liebenberg, “and the drive to be unique. If you’re not relevant and you can’t bring a distinctly new consumer experience and product offering, you have no need to exist.”
The brand took over 10 years of hard work, research and development, mainly because of the multi-layered approach of the brand. “It’s about daily escapism; an escape from the ordinary”, enthuses co-founder Sirois, who is integral to the creative direction of the brand.
From custom fixtures, designer hand-crafted wood and linen counters filled with beautiful, bespoke boxes of coffee and Rooibos capsules, the Coco Safar Capsule Emporium is like none other.
For the first time, Third Wave coffee has made its way into the inside of a capsule, thanks to Coco Safar. The revolutionary capsules make use of the finest grade, small batch and micro-roasted coffee, meticulously sourced from the best producers around the globe. Each capsule has further been sealed in a high barrier-proof sachet, ensuring that the coffee is as fresh as the day it was roasted – a fact that’s evident by the incredible aroma released when opening a Coco Safar capsule sachet.
The capsules come in the form of the City Roast collection with colourful cinematic boxes. Like the iconic cities that have influenced the founders and their travels, each blend is inspired by the evocative characteristics of its particular city, whether it’s the smooth and gripping Havana, the sleek and elegant Saint Tropez, or the boisterous and gutsy Jakarta, there’s a blend that suits everyone’s taste. For the more discerning, there are also the exclusive luxury collections, which consist of specially sourced and unique coffees like limited edition Cup of Excellence® from micro-lots bought on auction and top graded rare coffee beans individually merchandised.
The red and green Rooibos capsules, aptly named Kaapstad and Stellenbosch are out of this world with a special proprietary and secret blend of spice-infused maple syrup, crystallized via a complex process, to elevate the flavour of the Rooibos in ways never thought possible. “We are incredibly proud of our Rooibos capsules. It’s taken years of research and development to get it to this point, and the result is phenomenal”, says Liebenberg, even ensuring them the support of Rooibos Limited, the world’s leading supplier and exporter Rooibos tea.
No detail has been overlooked when it comes to the seductive and timeliness ambience of the Coco Safar Café and Espresso Bar, or the comfort of its patrons. From the cinematic lighting to the music, to the seating, every aspect has been crafted to ensure a truly indulgent experience. “Whether you’re popping in for a quick espresso, or want to spend time over a leisurely breakfast, high tea or a true dessert experience, you’ll find that the multi-sensory environment we’ve created, and the dedicated way in which we’ve trained our staff will ensure a seamless yet rather addictive experience, every time”, believe Liebenberg and Sirois.
Coco Safar is obsessed with providing uncompromising, consistent quality which surpasses the expectations of its patrons– ultimately everything it makes and the way it is presented is about creating a sensual experience for the consumer, at every level.
Coco Safar is an authentic, understated luxury café experience, whether you have a few hours to spend, a few minutes to grab a great coffee and a proper croissant to go or want to take away unique and awesome patisserie or a special dessert experience to enjoy back home.