Marcus & Lena
Founder & Owner
After a few years in Ireland and a short visit back to our origins in Germany, we took some time off on a sabbatical year to reconnect with each other, discover new places, and mostly heal.
Our journey took us to Lagos in January 2020, where we found more than just a resting place to stay and recover from our journey as a family. We also made it a priority for recovery from a long-term medical condition suffering from for years. We've always been conscious of our environment, especially during the pandemic. But it wasn't just the pandemic that made us rethink our consumption - it's also a deep yearning to bring some changes in the hospitality industry. And so, our project of passion was born.
We had the idea to create a zero-waste coffee shop serving coffee in eatable vegan cups so our customers could enjoy great, direct trade coffee while eating away the cups themselves! We knew there had to be a better way than simply throwing everything away after it was used. But we couldn't just stop there - we wanted to be able to bring awareness and sustainability into our everyday lives.
Coffee shops hand out an estimated 250 billion paper cups every year, which go straight to landfills. Even the cups that say they're recyclable on the packaging are misleading because the infrastructure to recycle them is costly and doesn't exist in many places. When we started our first coffee truck at the Marina, we wanted to take sustainability to another level but contribute 0 % waste to the streets of beautiful Lagos.
After an extended time of trial and error, during which we worked with local businesses and communities, the idea became a reality and MarLe cafe was born. We are now very happy to be serving not only a good product but also making sure there is no waste from our coffee, delicious cakes and home-made breakfasts and lunches!
At MarLe cafe, we source our coffee and grains from a small local farm in Chiapas, Mexico. Everything we serve is not only sustainable and biologically certified - it also comes from small producers who we support because we believe small lights can become a firework. By supporting local farmers and producers, we know that the money goes directly to them, helping build better infrastructure and education, providing real support for their businesses.
We as a couple work hard to create a place where people from all walks of life can come together to share their values, fairness, sustainability and giving back to their communities.
MarLe cafe has so far ‘bean’ a great hit with customers and with such a unique concept and a worthy cause, we hope that our coffee shop will ‘mocha’ us happy and sustainable!
Follow us on Instagram and Facebook @marlecafelagos