REVIEW: Manchester’s Cat Cafe – A Mecca for Cat Lovers

Fluffy slept the enough time we were there

Warning: look away now if you are not a cat lover….
…now we can continue. If you’re a cat lover, and why wouldn’t you be, this is the place for you. Housed in Manchester’s vibrant Northern Quarter, the area is known for being forward thinking and innovative, the place to go to if you’re looking for something a little different and how much more different can you be then having a café full of cats.

Ygritte loved watching all the activity going on below

This is the second time I’ve visited the Cat Café. The first time my boyfriend and I stumbled upon it unexpectedly over the summer. I’d heard rumours about it but I was slightly puzzled about how such a place would work in practice.

I need not have worried because the cats are well taken care of from what I could see. Even before you enter the main café area you’re given a list of rules to abide by whilst in there, rules such as not stroking the cats if they are asleep, picking them up or chasing them. Shoes had to be either taken off or plastic booties put over them and they asked you to sanitise your hands before going in. 

I also wondered about what happened to the cars at night and was told that there are ‘Cat Nannies on duty’ when the café closes to clean the place and give the cats all the attention they need. Far from the vision I have of cats climbing all over the tables whilst I’m slurping my coffee and filling my face with cake, the cats pretty much do their own thing. 

For some people I noticed, this was a little frustrating. I could see them anxious for the cats to come to them, sit on them, be more affectionate. But then I started to think that maybe the cats are used to being stroked and showered with attention from each new group of people that came in that they really didn’t need to go looking for affection and attention. They are after all the constant centre of attention in the café.

Now to the cats themselves. 

Their cat family are gorgeous. I know as a cat lover I’m supposed to say that all cats are gorgeous but they’re not, especially the bald ones, but these ones are. I know you shouldn’t have favourites either but I do, so much so that my boyfriend’s mum bought me a fridge magnet with the cat in question’s face on. Her name’s Ygritte, named after the Game of Thrones character. She’s a Norwegian Forest cat with the most luxurious coat of fur I dare anyone not to fall in love with her. 
My boyfriend’s mum was particularly taken with Keira, a Bengal who loves to jump on your back apparently, though we saw no evidence of this thankfully. 
The cat breeds in the café range from the aforementioned Norwegian Forest and Bengal to the  Persian, British Short Haired, Maine Coone (one of my favourite breeds), Birman (which is a new one to me), the very cute Ragdoll and a Russian blue.  

This one never moved from here the whole time we were in the café.  

What is slightly unusual about this café is that you pay by the minute. For every 5 minutes you’re in the café you pay £1 with most people staying on average for about an hour. The price does include unlimited hot and cold drinks but you do have to pay for cake.

If you book it costs £12 per person per hour and again the drinks are free and you can stay for as long as you like, you simply pay to the nearest five minutes when you leave. 
The Cat Café also offers Student Discount with a valid student ID card and can be used Monday-Friday only.

Keira posing for her photo

Unfortunately, they don’t allow little ones under the age of 10 for obvious reasons so if you want to relax in a relatively child-free zone, then I guess this is a plus. (I’m thinking of all the mummies out there that want a rest from the sound of creaming kids). 

Also a big plus in my eyes is that the Cat Café has full disabled access and disabled bathroom facilities. I went along this time with two mature ladies (they’d hate me calling them old) and they found all but taking off their shoes pretty easy. 

Fluffy ignoring everyone

The café is open six days a week from 10:00-7:00 pm and 9:00-7:00 pm on weekends. They are closed on Tuesdays but rather excitingly they do Cat Yoga and films nights which you can find out more about from their website. Link here: Cat Café Manchester

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