Mirador Investigates the Best Study Locations Around Lamorinda


Maddie Geary

Finals week: the most dreaded five days of a student’s semester. The days leading up to it are filled with anxiety and stress. The actual finals seem like a century-long test filled with questions you panic as you read…right? After all, the Urban Dictionary definition of finals week states that it is “the worst week of a college or high school student’s life. Finals week involves pulling an all-nighter to reverse the months of slacking that have killed their grades. Finals week involves a lot of stress and very little sleep, the college or high school student will be on edge the entire time, thus it is not a good time to screw with them by playing practical jokes or something you might find funny.”

Finals are inevitably going to be rough, but what can you do to make it as comfortable and successful as possible? There are lots of approaches which include eating well, exercising, and staying organized. But the one that always helps me, is finding good study locations that can help you put yourself in a study mood. Here are the top three places in Lamorinda to study:

  1. Libraries

The two main libraries that I have studied at are the Lafayette Library and the Orinda Library. The one in Lafayette is larger, newer, and much more spacious. It has various study rooms that you can reserve to block out noise. It is also located near to some great food places for those study snacks including Chipotle, Whole Foods, Jamba Juice, Yogurt Shack, and Taco Bell. The only downside to the Lafayette Library is that it is a little far for those who live in the Downs. Orinda Library is a good alternative. Although it is significantly smaller and more dated than the Lafayette Library, it is more convenient for many students. Be careful though: the seniors at Miramonte are usually there pretty early and fill up the seats…best to give them priority for first semester because next semester it will be all yours.

  1. Cafes

Do you love to incorporate food and drink with studying materials? A nice cozy cafe is probably the right fit for you. Take your pick: Starbucks, Pete’s, Sisi’s Cafe, or Panache. All give off a different atmosphere but all serve great hot drinks and pastries (Sisi’s and Panache sell bubble tea too!). For instance, Starbucks and Pete’s are generally the most busy out of the four, but if you can work well with a little white noise you will enjoy studying at either of those. Sisi’s can get really busy depending on the time and it is also a little small inside. However, they serve superior chai tea lattes and there is even an outside back patio that is a good study location if weather is substantial. Panache serves the best bubble tea and is generally the least noisy. However, it is in Lafayette so it might be a little far for some students.

  1. Home

If you are the type of person who can’t deal with noise while attempting to study, the best place for you is a house. Although I can’t study in my room (my bed is always way too tempting), I oftentimes go into my dining room and set up all my stuff on the table. A nice perk about studying at home is that there is no closing time! It can be quite annoying when your study location is closing right when you are finally starting to concentrate. Studying at home prevents this dilemma completely. Plus, pets are good study buddies (especially cats).