Strikingly cool coffee machines to kick off back-to-school September

Calling all coffee addicts...

Schools, universities and offices are set to re-open this September, as life continues to return to (a new) normal. While some offices start welcoming back employees, others continue to encourage working-from-home, and schools and Universities will also look a little different this September. But the one thing everyone will be needing to navigate back-to-school, back-to-work life is a decent cup of coffee.

It certainly seems to be on people's minds, as September comes hand-in-hand with autumn-inspired lattes, and Pinterest and Instagram feeds littered with coffee photography. With more people based at home, this year there's a clear focus around coffee machines too, for barista-style coffee at home. We're seeing a whole range of cool designs flood shop windows, our social media feeds and even our inbox. We've picked out seven stand-out coffee machines, ranging from cool designer looks to quirkier styles, and good value options too for the students amongst us.


Coffee machine, or work of art? With its striking curves, carved wooden handles, cool dials, Louboutin red sole and the iconic bird perched on top, the La Pavoni clearly means business. This is not for coffee novices, this design shows you take coffee seriously. Frankly, we're not even sure what all those dials and levers do, but the design is undeniably sexy and would make a proud style statement on any kitchen counter or kitchen island.

(Image credit: Simon Palfrader)

This latest model, the Esperto, was inspired by Carlo Galizzi, a renowned Italian industrial designer who has influenced La Pavoni’s designs for over 20 years. It's also available in gold and copper colours.

The La Pavoni Esperto Lever Coffee Machine, £1,499, is available online and in-store at Smeg London, 14 Regent St St. James's, London SW1Y 4PH.

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The Barisieur's quirky looks remind us a bit of what we imagine a lab might look like. But its intriguing looks aren't even the best part about this coffee maker; it also operates as an alarm clock, waking you with freshly brewed coffee or tea.

The Barisieur promises to ease you into your morning with the sounds of bubbling water along with the smell of the freshly brewed coffee. How does it work? An induction coil is used to boil the water efficiently in the vessel above. There's a milk vessel centralised in the base, while the shower head disperses the water evenly over the ground coffee, which apparently offers a better saturation to get the most out of your brew. The concealed drawer is for storing coffee or tea.

The Barisieu, £345,

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For professionals wanting to create a smart office environment at home, Melitta's chic Purista Jubilee Edition offers both sleek looks and touch-of-a-button ease. No faffing around, this coffee machine promises the perfect espresso at the push of a button. This machine does everything from the coffee grinding to making thick creamy espressos, without the time-consuming faff of manual machines.

Available whilst stocks last, this Purista® Jubilee Edition Series 300 features a striking matt black design with gold accents, and has a slim build (it's just 20cm wide), making it perfect for home office spaces or compact kitchens. It's smart, too; it can be connected to an App so it can be used remotely or learn different recipes, it can adjust the strength of your coffee and also features a 'Quiet as a Whisper Grinder' (Quiet Mark) which promises minimal interruption and noise – perfect for the home office.

The Purista® Jubilee Edition Series 300 fully automatic coffee machine, £400, is available via

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Love a more vintage-inspired look? The Francis Francis X7.1 incorporates both a modern capsule system and a steam wand, all with a cool, retro look. Its shape was inspired by the iconic Italian design of the 1960s, but integrates a modem control panel featuring soft-touch buttons. The Iperespresso capsule system creates full-bodied espressos, while the Pannarello steam wand froths milk for creamy cappuccinos and lattes. The design is also available in red or black.

Francis Francis X7.1 Iperespresso, £156,

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Short on countertop space in a compact kitchen or live in shared accommodation? NESCAFÉ's Dolce Gusto Genio S coffee machine is super compact, and designed to make professional-quality coffee more accessible for everyday coffee drinkers. Useful new features include Espresso Boost and Temperature Control, helping you fine-tune your perfect cup of coffee. The machine’s adjustable drink size option also means your coffee can be tailored to your mug or coffee cup size. It's suitable for all 50 of NESCAFÉ's pods, ranging from teas and coffees (including their Starbucks pods range giving you Starbucks coffee at home) to Nesquik hot chocolate.

NESCAFÉ Dolce Gusto Genio S Plus by De’Longhi or Krups, from £89.99,

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When we saw the price tag on LavAzza's Tiny machine, we had to do a double take. A coffee machine for £39? Surely not. With just a single button, this compact coffee machine is as simple as it gets: just pop in a coffee pod and press go. It's currently on offer for £39 (down from £59), available while stock lasts. Practical, compact, silent, and with an unbeatable price point, it's the ideal coffee machine for students setting off to University – and making coffee at home will help them save money on take-away coffees too.

LavAzza Tiny, £39 (special offer price), from

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Offering the best of both worlds, the Swan Nordic coffee machines showcase stunning curves and wood detailing, and is surprisingly budget-friendly too. It's compatible with both pods and ground coffee, so it could make just about any cup of coffee you like, it has a milk frothing attachment for cappuccinos and lattes, and it can make two cups at once – handy for when your partner asks for one too.

Swan Nordic SK22110GRYN Espresso Coffee Machine in Grey, £99, from

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Lotte Brouwer

Lotte is the Digital Editor for Livingetc, and has been with the website since its launch. She has a background in online journalism and writing for SEO, with previous editor roles at Good Living, Good Housekeeping, Country & Townhouse, and BBC Good Food among others, as well as her own successful interiors blog. When she's not busy writing or tracking analytics, she's doing up houses, two of which have features in interior design magazines. She's just finished doing up her house in Wimbledon, and is eyeing up Bath for her next project.