SoHo is one of New York City’s trendiest and most diverse neighborhoods. New York City’s SoHo has no relation to the London neighborhood with the same name. In fact, the name SoHo is a blend of “South” and “Houston” from “south of Houston Street” and was invented when the area underwent its transformation into a trendy hot-spot. Before being known as SoHo, the area was known as the Cast Iron District because it contains the greatest collection of cast-iron architecture in the world, with over 200 buildings. SoHo is home to many exclusive art galleries, museums, cafes and boutiques. The neighborhood of SoHo occupies the area from Houston (North), Canal Street (South), West Broadway (West) and Crosby Street (East). It is one of Manhattan’s most trendy areas.
This fashionable neighborhood is packed with the chick and extravagant. SoHo’s boutiques and restaurants are clustered in the northern area of the neighborhood, along Broadway, Prince Street and Spring Street. The sidewalks in this area are often crowded with tourists and street vendors selling jewelry, t-shirts, and other works, sometimes leaving no space for pedestrians to walk. SoHo is known for its eclectic mix of different boutiques for shopping, including Prada, Chanel, popular skateboard/sneakerhead stores such as Supreme and Clientele, Kid Robot, and the newly established Apple Store. SoHo features a very diverse crowd on weekends. The crowds include a mix of shoppers, tourists, locals, fashionistas and clubbers.
A Shoppers Delight
SoHo also happens to be one of the best shopping neighborhoods in New York City. On holidays and weekends, the cobbled streets of SoHo are packed with shoppers. You can find everything from high-end boutiques to established brand names. Many of the world’s most recognizable brands can be found in SoHo. This includes everything from Prada to Old Navy. There are some high-end boutiques mixed with more mainstream stores as well.
SoHo’s cast-iron Architecture
SoHo has the world’s largest collection of cast-iron facades. Many of the buildings in SoHo were built with cast-iron as the foundation. Cast iron was used in the mid nineteenth century to provide a decorative front to smarten up an old building. Later on, whole buildings in SoHo were designed to feature the cast iron. Cast iron was quick to build with and cheaper than materials such as stone or brick. SoHo has the world’s largest collection of cast-iron facades. Greene Street is the heart of SoHo’s Cast-Iron district. Some of the best cast-iron buildings can be found on Greene Street.
Artists and SoHo
SoHo’s architecture is inhabited by many artists who have helped turn this one run-down neighborhood into one of the trendiest neighborhoods in the world. In the 1970s, artists began moving into SoHo because of its large spaces that were contained in the run-down industrial units. Nowadays trendy boutiques and bars line its streets, and it’s a popular destination for both New Yorkers and tourists. SoHo also contains one of the best nightlife in NYC. You will find some fine dining restaurants and wonderful bars. Keep in mind that SoHo is one of the more pricey neighborhoods in NYC.
Getting to SoHo
SoHo is easily accessible by subway train through the N or R of the Prince Street station, the C, E or 6 to Spring Street, or the F, B, D or V train to the Broadway-Lafayette station.