After spending some kind of digital nomad life in Izmir, I think it’s only fair to share my experience of working remotely in the city. And that includes the opportunity to find the best coworking space in Izmir. I got a chance to work in two coworking spaces in Izmir: Withco Coworking Space in Konak and Originn Coworking Space in Bornova.
In this post, I’m going to write a review of working from both Withco and Originn Coworking Space and share my firsthand experience on which coworking space is the best in Izmir.
So, which one is the best coworking space in Izmir, Turkey? Let’s find out!
Coworking Space in Izmir, Turkey
As a remote worker myself, I’ve loved the concept of coworking space that enables me to work conveniently in a semi-office space. On top of high-speed internet and the sense of working as a professional again after spending way too long working in my pajamas from home, most of the coworking spaces also allow me to purchase a daily pass so that I can work from there whenever I want.
So, after having Eduplex as my favorite spot to work remotely in my hometown Bandung, I dug some information about the best coworking space in Izmir so that I could share my firsthand experience to work from there.
Apart from the information I got on Google, I also checked with some digital nomad groups on Facebook to make sure that I find a nice coworking space to work from, and not just another cafe that labeled itself as coworking space. LOL. To my surprise, some people in the groups actually recommended me to go to Starbucks, but anyway… I eventually found two coworking space recommendations in Izmir: Withco Coworking Space in Konak and Originn Coworking Space in Bornova.
So, which one is better?
Withco Coworking Space in Konak, Izmir
The first coworking space that I went to in Izmir was Withco, because based on Google Maps, the location was closer to my apartment in Alsancak. I only had to go to Halkapinar by tram, and then continue to take another bus and stop at Cinarli Hastanesi (read: hospital). I walked around 2 to 3 minutes from the bus stop to get to Withco, which was quite noticeable with the mural around the building.
However, the first time I went to Withco Coworking Space, I stopped a bit further away on the next bus stop so that I had to walk around 1 km to the coworking space. It was raining at the time that made me kinda annoy a little. But well, I got there safely so I had nothing to complain.
Daily Pass at Withco Coworking Space
Before I came to Withco, I dropped them a message via Instagram to confirm that they provide a daily pass for their customers. They responded quite fast, and they mentioned that the daily pass costs 59 TL (around $4 USD) per day.
With our daily pass, we can work in the common space at Withco from 9 AM to 6 PM. The daily pass includes free and unlimited coffee, tea, and drinking water with a high-speed internet connection.
I went there the next day, but since I couldn’t, for the love of me, wake up early, I arrived in Withco at around 1 AM. I paid by cash, and while I got the receipt for my payment, I couldn’t seem to open the entrance/exit gate without asking for help from the receptionist.
Shared Desk at Withco Coworking Space
Since Withco Coworking Space is really huge, I didn’t manage to check the entire coworking space. It didn’t help that I got some kind of social anxiety, and there are a lot of people at Withco Coworking Space that I assume it’s probably the hub for some startups in Izmir, or in Turkey in general.
As a daily pass holder, you can work from anywhere in the common space at Withco Coworking Space. However, since I needed the electricity socket to make sure that my laptop was working, I had to ask the direction from the receptionist. There’s a shared table not so far from the coffee shop at Withco Coworking Space, and that’s where the receptionist suggested.
Since my first visit at Withco Coworking Space, I always aimed at the same desk since it was more convenient for me.
Other Facilities at Withco Coworking Space
There’s a pantry not so far from the shared desk, where you can get free and unlimited tea and coffee. There’s also a water dispenser that works perfectly so you can pour either hot, warm, or cold water and take it to your desk. In the pantry, Withco also provides trays for both clean and dirty mugs so you can take and collect them accordingly.
One of the things that I noticed in Turkey is that most places apply smart lighting systems in the public toilet. Withco is no exception. From the hand dryer, the lightbulb in the toilet, and the soap dispenser using the censor… Everything in the toilet is advanced in terms of technology.
My favorite is the sign of “thinking room” in the toilet and how they actually designed each toilet as a closed spaced where you can actually get the privacy you deserve, whether you’re there to pee, shit, or even just randomly think about life and cry. LOL.
Originn Coworking Space in Bornova, Izmir
After visiting Withco Coworking Space, I decided to try another coworking space based on someone’s recommendation in one of the digital nomad groups. It’s Originn Coworking Space in Bornova, and while the location is a bit farther away than Withco, I found the route to get to Originn slightly easier.
If you stay anywhere close to any metro station in Izmir, you can take metro with Evka as the final station and stop at Sanayi station. From the station, you can walk to the Originn Coworking Space for around 5 to 10 minutes.
Daily Pass at Originn Coworking Space
Since I figured that reaching out through Instagram worked for me to confirm the price for the daily pass at Withco, I decided to send a message on Insta to Originn too before I came. They also replied my message by telling me that the coworking space is open from 9 AM to 6 PM, and they mentioned that it cost 50 TL (around $3.5 USD) for the daily pass.
If I came to Withco without any expectation, I went to Originn as someone from “Foreigners in Izmir” group mentioned the coworking space. However, he didn’t come up with a stellar review about it since according to him, there aren’t many public spaces we can use at Originn and he didn’t feel “digital nomad vibes” there.
Honestly, I don’t know what the latter means because personally, I decided to work from a coworking space to get things done. Not necessarily to network with other digital nomads. But anyway, when I arrived at Originn Coworking Space, around the parking lot, it gave me some kind of “warehouse vibe” instead of a coworking space.
But when I entered the building, there were two women in the receptionist area, and when I approached them, they welcomed me in English. The receptionist at Withco didn’t speak English, so from my foreigner’s point of view, it will be easier to work from Originn when it comes to communication with their staff.
Moreover, one of the ladies actually recognized me and asked if I was the one who dropped them a message on Instagram on the previous day. Since when I came there, the Turkish government still applied the HES code to enter public places, the receptionist asked for my HES code and even a copy of my passport to proceed with the payment. Administration-wise, I found Originn more strict than Withco, as Withco receptionist didn’t ask me anything when I purchased the daily pass at their coworking space.
I paid by cash, and while I got the receipt from the receptionist, by the end of the month, they also sent me a digital receipt via e-mail. It was actually a thoughtful gesture, that could work well if you have the benefit to get it covered or reimbursed by your company.
Shared Desk at Originn Coworking Space
Since the “lack of public spaces” is one thing that the guy mentioned about Originn, I started wondering what it meant. But after I purchased the daily pass, the receptionist directed me to an empty desk in the public space. She even provided an electricity socket when I needed one.
Unlike at Withco where I had to share the desk with the others, I practically had my own desk when I worked from Originn. And based on my experience at both coworking spaces, I gotta say that I liked Originn better because of that.
On my first visit, they were under renovation, so it was a bit noisy with what was going on there. But on my second visit to Originn, I personally would choose to work from Originn than Withco when it comes to ambiance. It suits my working style better, because then not only did I get my own space, it’s less crowded too. The only downside is that since it’s located in Bornova, it’s a bit farther from Alsancak.
Other Facilities at Originn Coworking Space
Same as Withco, Originn Coworking Space also offers free-flow drinking water, coffee, and tea for as long as you get a valid pass at the space. The pantry is located not too far from the public space, and there’s also a water dispenser.
They provide the hot water in the pantry for tea and coffee and an automatic water dispenser where you can adjust the water temperature. The latter didn’t work too well though, I couldn’t get the cold water as the one I drank at Withco.
Another difference is that Originn only provides paper cups instead of ceramic mugs like at Withco. So in some way, the latter is more sustainable when it comes to this facility.
Apart from that, the toilet at Originn Coworking Space also uses high-advanced technology. Not only for the lighting system and hand dryer, but even the entrance door uses the censor to get in. Unlike the toilet at Withco that gives you some kind of privacy with the closed area for each toilet, Originn Coworking Space has a more open circulation around the toilet, so someone will more likely be able to hear your business in the toilet. LOL.
Final Verdict: Which One is the Best Coworking Space in Izmir?
I would assume that the answer can vary, depending on who you’d ask. For example, if you’re looking into networking, Withco is probably more suitable for extroverted remote workers who look for connections with other people. But, if you’re pretty much like me who would prefer your own privacy and you need some space and decent internet connection to get your things done, Originn would probably work better for you.
With my social anxiety situation, Withco kinda stressed me out to the point that I didn’t even dare to explore more areas outside my shared desk, toilet, and the coffee shop located in the center of Withco building close to the entrance.
I never had to have lunch at either place (I just couldn’t wake up early for the love of me!), but Originn has its own cafe that serves hot meals like in case you’re hungry. The coffee shop at Withco also sells sandwiches, snacks, and cookies. At Withco coffee shop, they even use Starbucks coffee beans if that matters to you.
Originn is also located next to a small coffee shop for variation, which Withco doesn’t have. In general, here’s my take about Withco and Originn Coworking Space in Izmir, Turkey!
Withco Coworking Space
- The vibe is more ‘alive’, which is suitable if you’re looking to network with fellow remote workers or people in the startup industry.
- It’s relatively more accessible. It’s only a couple of bus stops from Halkapinar, and the coworking space is located around 100 meters from the bus stop.
- High-speed internet connections with good facilities for unlimited drinks, coffee, and tea.
- The daily pass is affordable, only 59 TL per day.
- If you need electricity socket, your choice is only to sit at the shared desk that comes with it on each seat.
- The public area is quite spacious, there’s also another floor upstairs although not all spaces come with electricity sockets.
Originn Coworking Space
- It’s probably more suitable for introverts because it gives you enough space to have your own desk, and they provide an electricity socket in case you need it.
- High-speed internet connection. The wifi works in all my devices, even on my iPhone 6 that sometimes couldn’t get connected to available wifi.
- The daily pass is slightly cheaper than Withco, only for 50 TL per day.
- Originn Coworking Space will also send a digital receipt through email by the end of the month.
- I find Originn staff more friendly and assertive than those at Withco Coworking Space.
So for me, I think Originn Coworking Space in Izmir is a better option for me since I need more privacy to get my work done. But I can see how Withco can also be a better option for others who require networking for their business. I mean, I saw a Ferrari parking at Withco so maybe that’s where the money is?
Well, that’s my take for the best coworking space in Izmir, Turkey. Do you have any other recommendations for a coworking space in Izmir? Maybe one in another part of Izmir or Turkey? Share in the comment below, and cheerio! 🙂
Marya The BeauTraveler
I am the founder and main editor at The BeauTraveler. I spent 4 years working in the aviation industry, but ironically got to travel more right after quitting the industry in 2015. Born and raised in Indonesia, I started working remotely in 2017 and while I stay at home most of the time, I also regularly spend 2-3 months living a semi-digital nomad life elsewhere every year.
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