Tucked in a small corner of the Clifford Centre, you’ll find the newly opened Wai Cafe. Owners Dayton and Kent are bucking the trend of vast cafe spaces instead opting for a tiny space right in the CBD. With Dayton’s former experience as a flight attendant and Kent’s devotion to great coffee, there’s no doubt in our mind that this place will be you next favourite hangout spot!
Like most successful entrepreneurs, Dayton and Kent started with a dream, to own a café where they can share their passion for good coffee. Kent, who still works as a lawyer, grew up in New Zealand and experienced first hand the cafe revolution that has occurred there over the last decade. On coming back to Singapore, he sought to find the perfect cup of coffee and soon became a regular at Common Man Coffee Roasters. Dayton on the other hand, was born and raised in Malaysia. After moving to Singapore, he starting his career as an airline cabin crew but has always had a passion for F&B. Dayton is in charge of the day to day running of the cafe and his calming nature paired with a bright smile and outstanding eye for service leaves us in no doubt this place will win some regular customers of it's own in no time.
On my last visit to the cafe, I managed to sit down with Dayton and have a chat about his vision for the cafe, plans for the future and his favourite way to enjoy a brew...
M: What is your vision for Wai cafe?
D: Coffee tastes in Singapore are evolving fast and there is an emerging independent cafe culture, particularly on weekends. We wanted to bring some of that downtown so people can make it part of their busy week. All in a cute cafe just minutes from thousands of offices.
M: What's your plan for the next 5 years? Expansion?
D: Our model is based on the personal touch and this means we are likely to keep it small, local and independent. We are keen to have a distinct offering from the chains, which dominate here so there won't be franchises or 10 outlets islandwide.
M: What makes Wai cafe different from the rest of the cafes in the CBD?
D: It is one of the only independent cafes downtown. We are exclusively committed to the best coffee - beans from our friends at Common Man, our wonderful team of local baristas and our hard working Synesso MVP, in a friendly, relaxed space we have made our own.
M: I am visiting your cafe for the first time, what should I try?
D: The good old flat white - works so well with the 22 Martin blend!
So if you happen to be in the city, grab your favourite cuppa and pair it with a delicious fresh croissant - I'm pretty sure that this won’t be your last visit to this awesome place!
#01-08 Clifford Centre, 24 Raffles Place, 048621
Monday – Friday: 8am - 5.30pm
Closed on weekends