On a sunny Sunday morning as we make our way through the beautiful French quarter of Puducherry post an early morning drive from Chennai, it is the aroma of coffee, freshly baked croissants and lots of activity at this particular café that forces us to make a halt. As we park our vehicle and enter Café des Arts, the friendly waiters usher us in and give us the last free table in the portico of the quaint eatery. The vintage-style eatery is straight out of a European nation and is spacious. The building is supposed to have been built towards second half of 19th century and also houses a boutique selling lifestyle products. Owing to its word-of-mouth popularity and mention in international travel guides like Lonely Planet, the place has mostly people waiting to get a table, especially over weekends. It opens as early as 8 am and shuts shop by 7 pm.

Soft background music, low tables and lounge chairs add a relaxed feel to the environment, making it ideal for those who want to relax or chat for a long time. We found the place filled with foreign tourists, young couples and families. Waiters run around taking orders across the property, which has seating out in the courtyard, in the portico and indoors. The courtyard of the café also has a cool rickshaw placed below a tree full of pink blossoms. Perfect place to click those striking selfies!

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From fluffy and large cheese stuffed omlettes, light savoury or sweet crepes to sinful Nutella waffles or just a buttery croissant with a cup of coffee; take your pick. The place also serves the insanely popular French dish Croque Monsieur made with ham and cheese. In addition, they have deliciously fresh salads and baguette sandwiches. If you have a sweet tooth, do not miss their chocolate cake with vanilla ice cream.

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As you wait for your order (which might take a while owing to huge demand), do not forget to check out the cool graffiti on the walls and the French architecture.

You might forget the fact that you are just 150 km away from Chennai as you enjoy your European spread at Café des Arts! Worth a weekend plan, you say! Absolutely yes.

Cafe Des Arts is located at Suffren Street in White Town , Puducherry.

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