Top 14 Modern Eateries With Heritage Elements In Central Surabaya

Top 14 Modern Eateries With Heritage Elements In Central Surabaya
Shierly Octaviana
Shierly Octaviana 
| 8 min read

Most tourists categorize North Surabaya, some parts of East Surabaya, and Central Surabaya as “Central Surabaya,” even though these areas are different. This is because there are “heritage” elements throughout this region that help tourists see how the old Surabaya worked.

Here, heritage usually refers to museums and other historical attractions in the area. But when talking about buildings, including eateries, this word also refers to the vintage exterior and interior design. These eateries have modern amenities while still retaining their heritage. Sometimes, the names of the dishes also bring back special memories when we visit these modern eating places in Central Surabaya.

Saat Seduh Coffee has left the biggest impression on me. This cafe has elements of European colonialism that immerse you in the early 19th-century life in Soerabaja (Surabaya’s old name). I also find it interesting that Xiang Rui Kopitiam, an iconic hotel, has also been transformed into a 24-hour food-court-style kopitiam that you can visit.

If you’d like to learn more about these fabulous modern eateries with heritage elements in Central Surabaya, keep reading for my picks!

1. Nude Coffee and Cookies

Yes, “Nude” is the restaurant’s name. It used to be one of the Netherlands’ factories.

Nude Coffee and Cookies is only 68 m (223.10 ft) away from Saat Seduh Coffee, another cafe in the Jembatan Merah area. I suggest you hop on the Suroboyo Bus to Halte Veteran (Veteran Bus Stop) and walk your way to the west side of the bus stop. Both cafes are near the same historical building, Hoofdbureau De Politia Museum, which now operates as the central police office of Surabaya City. Specifically, Nude Coffee and Cookies has the ex-colonial office of NV Borneo-Sumatra Maatschappij 45 m (147.64 ft) in its east side.

Learning the history of the Netherlands’ buildings around Nude Coffee and Cookies wouldn’t be complete without a pleasant cup of hot tea! Here, I order a portion of the “once-underground-origin” singkong goreng to accompany my beverage.

Nude Coffee & Cookies

Address: In front of Central Surabaya’s Police Precinct Office, Jl. Jembatan Merah No.2, Krembangan Sel., Kec. Krembangan, Surabaya, Jawa Timur 60175

Opening hours: 8am - 10pm (daily)

2. Saat Seduh Coffee Jembatan Merah

Another one of Jembatan Merah’s vintage cafes is Saat Seduh Coffee, which is near Veteran Bus Stop (Halte Veteran). As for this one, it is directly opposite the central office of Maybank and Maybank Premiere. This was once Netherlands Spaarbank, one of Surabaya’s cultural heritages.

The bottom floor has a playable piano and some vintage history novels. Meanwhile, the top floor’s glass-separated windows let us view the old colonial buildings around the Central Surabaya area.

I’m not a smoker, so I don’t get to enjoy the top floor, unfortunately. That’s fine, though, as I still can see the piano while eating my Nutella toast and drinking the V60 blend! Be sure not to miss their croissants.

Saat Seduh Coffee Jembatan Merah

Address: Jl. Jembatan Merah, Krembangan Sel., Kec. Krembangan, Surabaya, Jawa Timur 60175

Opening hours: 8am - 10pm (daily)

3. Kafetien 88

I have loved going to Kafetien 88 since 2019, which was when I discovered it while looking for Surabaya cafes charging less than 50,000 IDR (3.21 USD) for one portion. I would say Kafetien 88 has the most authentic “kopitiam” look compared to similar cafes.

You won’t know it’s Kafetien 88 until you enter this building. It’s only 56 m (183.73 ft) walking from the east part of Klenteng Pak Kik Bio, the oldest Surabaya temple. Once you enter the kopitiam, you will be amazed by the vintage-looking torn pieces of paper as decoration. Each table also has a triangular-shaped ringing bell to call a staff member if you want to order additional beverages or make payments.

I would recommend visiting Kafetien 88 between lunch and dinner. They have the most tasty chocolate cheese toast. Don’t forget to order their hot chrysanthemum!

Kafetien 88

Address: Jl. Jagalan No.88, Bongkaran, Kec. Pabean Cantikan, Surabaya, Jawa Timur 60274

Opening hours: Mon - Sat: 7am - 7pm; Sun: 7am - 4pm

4. Xiang Rui Kopitiam (formerly Hotel Hasma Jaya)

Hotel Hasma Jaya used to be one of the largest hotels in the 1990s before it transformed into this awesome 24-hour kopitiam. You can see the hotel’s broken remnants in the area!

I was surprised on my first visit to this newly established kopitiam. I thought it was a restaurant or cafe similar to Kafetien 88. Turns out it’s a food court with Xiang Rui as the signature stall. I arrived 10-15 minutes before 8 pm, my eating time limit. To warm me up while not overeating, Sup Merah (Indonesian’s version of Italian Minestrone) and a warm cup of Kopi Jahe (ginger coffee) became my ordering choices. They measure the rice portions generously!

You can also explore Kedungdoro when you visit this kopitiam. As it has a long history as the home of the ancient village of Kampong Surabaya since the 13th century, Kedungdoro is one of the highlights in Central Surabaya.

Xiang Rui Kopitiam

Address: Jl. Pasar Kembang No.76, Kupang Krajan, Kec. Sawahan, Surabaya, Jawa Timur 60253, Indonesia

5. VISMA | Coffee, Art & Co - Working Space

Have you visited the iconic shopping mall of Tunjungan Plaza for shopping and eating? Did you wish you could explore nearby cafes? I have a recommendation for you!

Enjoy the sights of classical abstract paintings in Visma Coffee. It is not only a cafe, but it’s also a space to support Surabaya’s creative economy through the art gallery!

I always aim to sit near the koi pond in this cafe after walking 550 m (1,804.46 ft) from the south part of Tunjungan Plaza. But in the photos I’ve added to this post, I decided to sit closer to the corner to ensure I got a good selfie.

Their beverage selections never fail me!

VISMA | Coffee, Art & Co - Working Space

Address: Jl. Tegalsari No.35, Tegalsari, Kec. Tegalsari, Surabaya, Jawa Timur 60262

Website: VISMA | Coffee, Art & Co - Working Space.

Opening hours: 8am - 10pm (daily)

6. Vegetarian Kedai Kungfu

Kampong Pecinan (Chinatown Village) in Surabaya is not only well-known for the deeply ingrained Hakka Chinese culture among the local Indonesians. One of the regions, Kapasan Dalam, used to be a Kung Fu village. That’s how Kedai Kungfu Vegetarian preserves both Kung Fu traditions and Chinese-Indonesian culture.

Kung Fu isn’t only in this eating place’s title. The Peranakan (Chinese and Malay/Indonesian) cuisine, such as Jammian, Kaifon mixed rice (my favorite), and Choipan (another one of my favorites) also add to Kedai Kungfu’s “heritage” touches.

I love the idea of mixing healthy vegetarian lifestyles with martial art-themed restaurants. Kedai Kungfu Vegetarian does it perfectly!

Vegetarian Kedai Kungfu

Address: Jl. Kapasan Dalam II No.1, Kapasan, Kec. Simokerto, Surabaya, Jawa Timur 60141

Opening hours: Mon - Fri: 7am - 8pm ; Sat - Sun: 7am - 8:30pm

7. Kepikiran Mie Kapasan

One of the items served here is a black noodle-style dish called Kepikiran Banget Senyumanmu. In Indonesian, it translates to, “I think a lot about your smile.”

Here, they call black noodles “I think a lot,” while yellow noodles are “I think of your (insert toppings or nicknames here).” So, “memories” is the middle name of Kepikiran Mie, a local Surabaya brand that has been around since 1992.

If you wish to have some economic lunch or dinner menus, Kepikiran Mie is the go-to place! I only paid 17,000 IDR (1.09 USD) for a portion of “I think a lot about your smile” with awesomely made bolognese sauce and fried wontons. The fried chicken “tofu” satay only costs 10,000 IDR (0.64 USD).

The Kapasan branch, more specifically, adds the “heritage” feel for me. It’s only four houses to the east of Boen Bio Temple, the ancient scholarly temple with three architectural style blends.

Kepikiran Mie Kapasan

Address: Jl. Kapasan No.151*, Kapasan, Kec. Simokerto, Surabaya, Jawa Timur 60141

Opening hours: 8am - 9:30pm (daily)

8. Locaahands

Locaahands was a gargantuan Amsterdam bookstore. Then, it evolved into a fabric-selling store and experienced many evolutions before becoming the Locaahands we know today.

Empowering youths to create expert-level products is Locaahands’ primary mission. I saw their dedication when I stepped into this restaurant for the first time. They sell many SME and local products, such as clothes with original designs, aprons, traditional medicines, and others.

The thing I love most about Locaahands is their pastry monument. I’ve never seen a spectacular food display, even in cities with awesome cafe cultures. After delighting in their artisan local food and beverage products (of which my favorite is Soto Mie Jakarta and West Javanese mint tea), why not grab some pastries? I forgot to bring my shopping bag, so, I ended up purchasing kue putri salju (a “snow white” cookie covered in sugar).


Address: Jl. Tunjungan No.39, Genteng, Kec. Genteng, Surabaya, Jawa Timur 60275

Website: Locaāhands

Opening hours: 10am - 12am (daily)

9. Phermitage

Phermitage in Jalan Tunjungan is opposite Platinum Hotel Tunjungan, the legendary heroic Siola monument, and Siola bus stop. And it is a lovely “modern-meets-vintage” cafe. The old colonial-style building and the black-and-white prints from the past blend well with the interior’s colors and the coffee machine around the cafe’s area.

I ordered galantine, a dish that European expats savor. In addition, I also ordered the smoky-yet-warming Lapsang Souchong artisan tea blend that I’ve struggled to find anywhere.

Phermitage, Pantrysserie & Coffee House

Address: Jl. Tunjungan No.28, Genteng, Kec. Genteng, Surabaya, Jawa Timur 60275

Opening hours: 9am - 11pm (daily)

10. Java Cup

Everything about Java Cup screams cultural heritage. First, the location is in Balai Sahabat, a building used by German and Dutch dance-loving expats. Balai Sahabat itself is right next to Cak Durasim, another one of Surabaya’s historical buildings, which now functions as a public traditional dancing and art stage.

No wonder they pay so much attention to their coffee-making process! I love the straightforward way in which their baristas talk about the coffee blends. The V60 I ordered was the classic Papua Wamena blend.

I might be an avid lover of everything matcha, but last time, I gave the chocolate roll a try because it matched with the coffee!

Java Cup

Address: Gedung Balai Sahabat, Jl. Genteng Kali No.89-91, Surabaya, Jawa Timur 60275

Opening hours: Mon - Thu: 7am - 9pm; Fri - Sun: 7am - 10pm

11. Omah Tua Coffee & Library

Omah Tua has existed since 1907. It is most well-known as a military base where Maspati youths gathered to strategize for the war in Surabaya. It has functioned as a cafe since 2016 thanks to the owner’s grandson’s initiative.

I feel this cafe is a hidden heaven. First, no vehicles can enter. I had to go by bus from Pasar Turi Bus Station to reach this cafe. Second, it is set only two houses away from the end of the alley. Third, you would need to eat before you arrive, since this cafe only provides beverages. Bonus: Their library room has many kickass philosophy books!

Omah Tua Coffee & Library

Address: Jalan Bubutan Gang Jl. Maspati V No.31, Bubutan, Kec. Bubutan, Surabaya, Jawa Timur 60174

Opening hours: Mon - Thu: 5pm - 10pm; Sat - Sun: 5pm - 10pm (closed on Fri)

12. Sini Aja Kafetaria

The central areas of cities in Indonesia tend to have the highest nightly price of the accoms. It can make budget travelers think twice about how they can optimize their budgets.

Kapasari’s Sini Aja (translation: “Come Here, Please”) Kafetaria food court can be your savior! The brick walls and boho designs in Sini Aja Kafetaria, and its location in Chinatown’s Kapasari area are the heritage elements in this one-of-a-kind food court.

I remember the price for Nasi Goreng Ayam hasn’t changed since my first visit to this food court in 2021, which is 13,000 IDR (0.83 USD).

Sini Aja Kafetaria

Address: Jl. Kapasari No.66, Kapasan, Kec. Simokerto, Surabaya, Jawa Timur 60141

Opening hours: 11am - 9pm (daily)

13. Aiola Eatery

This establishment’s official website states that “Aiola” is a made-up word from Indonesian’s “ayolah,” which means an invitation to do something.

I can see Aiola Eatery’s dedication to supporting Surabaya-exclusive culinary products from the affordable food menus. For example, my favorite pancake with sauces and ice cream is as cheap as 30,000 IDR (1.92 USD).

Aiola Eatery in Ketabang is the first Aiola food court I learned of. Plus, the 650-m (2,132.55-ft) distance from Surabaya’s Town Hall makes me recommend it as a go-to place for modern eateries with heritage touches.

Aiola Eatery

Address: Jl. Slamet No.16, Ketabang, Kec. Genteng, Surabaya, Jawa Timur 60272

Website: Aiola Eatery

Opening hours: 9am - 11pm (daily)

14. Fu Xi Dimsum House

This is the first time I have seen such an artistically made vintage halal dim sum eatery around Central Surabaya!

I found this authentic dim sum house when I wandered around the F&B SMEs that only appear in Jalan Tunjungan at night. The dim sum house is opposite Paviljoen Hotel, a century-old hotel.

They have standard and premium selections for their dim sum. Last time, since the “Dragon’s Pearl” name in the premium (24,000 IDR or 1.53 USD) selection intrigued me, that dim sum became the dim sum I tried before I returned home!

Fu Xi Dimsum House

Address: Jl. Genteng Besar No.85, Genteng, Kec. Genteng, Surabaya, Jawa Timur 60275

Opening hours: Mon - Fri: 7am - 10pm; Sat - Sun: 6am - 10pm

Explore the heritage of Central Surabaya's modern eating places

European colonial architecture, proximity to iconic buildings, memorable dish names, and traditional products—these are the heritage elements in Central Surabaya’s modern eateries. These elements become valuable learning sources as we enjoy our food and drinks crafted with modern techniques. So if you’re ready for your own adventure, pick any of the places above and get started!

P.S.: Some operational hours might differ on specific days and holidays. I had to confirm through WhatsApp chats and calls before I visited the places mentioned above.

Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.


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Hi! I'm Surabaya by birth, but I've lived in Semarang and Salatiga for more than two years. People think I look and act like a Central Javanese person. I've loved observing "hidden things" about...Read more

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