For me, one of the most important parts of exploring a new city is finding its best cafes. Not only am I looking for a place to sit and drink a cup of tea or try a slice of the local cake, but also to sit down after a long day of walking, so I can watch people, start a friendly conversation, or do some work.

It was love at first sight with Mijn Broodje. The bar/restaurant/cafe attached to our hostel (which you can read about here and here) was everything we needed it to be. Every day of our stay in Willemstad, we spent at least an hour munching on breakfast or sipping drinks. We would chat with the servers at the bar sometimes, and other times just relax on the couch reading a book from their selection.

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The cafe is open to the street, with high top tables on the sidewalk but also a bar, couches, and tables inside that were still subject to the ever-blowing breeze (a blessing on this hot island). The decor is comfortable. One wall is exposed stone and another is covered in a massive map (one of my favorite features). Opposite the map, the restaurant menu is written out on a chalkboard that extends from the ceiling to the floor. To top things off, there is an old fashioned bike hanging from the ceiling. The space was designed to act as a bit of a living room for everyone living in the hostel, so it’s okay to just sit and relax for a couple hours without ordering anything.

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We quickly discovered the friendly servers. Our first night, we sat at the bar with Peyton, who was just taking over the cafe from her parents. Though she spent most of her life in Amsterdam, her family relocated to Curacao about six years ago and after finishing up her studies last spring, she joined them on the island. Over the course of our week, Anna and I developed a wonderful friendship with Peyton. I value the personal connection we were able to build with this place and the people who work there.

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Mijn Broodje, you were the most perfect home base. We loved picking our way through your menu, trying different sandwiches (100% recommend the brie and honey) and drinks. We loved when the breeze would make our notebook pages flap in the wind. We loved learning the servers’ names one-by-one. We loved starting and ending our days with you. Thank you for the laughs and the caring service. We won’t forget it!

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