The SoHo/Soho is one of the most charming neighborhoods of Manhattan. Once visiting this area, you will be captivated to return and visit the place over and over again. It will be always nice and refreshing to return and re-visit this magnificent place.

The Soho (abbreviated for South of Houston Street) is located downtown (South East to the Greenwich Village) bordered by Houston (pronounced Haston) street in the North, Canal Street in the South, Crosby Street in the East and 6th Ave in the West.

To tour the Soho means to stroll along its streets, step into the art galleries spread all over, enjoy the café places, taste the best deserts & pastries NYC has to offer, breath the warm atmosphere, smile, and just feel good.

The Soho is also a bustling shopping area, full of brand name stores. While strolling along the streets you can bounced into these stores mainly located along Broadway Street.

Another interesting aspect that characterizes the Soho is its local typical architectures. There are about 500 buildings in the Soho that architectural elements made in cast iron, kind of neo classical designs, are incorporated in their facades. Most of them were built in mid-19th century. Cast iron is a product of the industrial revolution. It was cheaper at that time than marble and granite.

In the second half of the 19th century, the Soho area flourished as a center of commerce and recreation area, and so many of these decorated buildings were built there. In the early 20th century, crime infiltrated the neighborhood and so gradually many buildings were abandoned, set by fire (to win insurances) or purchased at very low cost by real estate developers. Later on, during the sixties of the 20th century many young artists, looking for cheap housing, moved into the neighborhood, opened studios and galleries. These artists were followed by mid-class families, renovating the apartments and surroundings and the area began to thrive again (the process of urban gentrification, similarly observed in other districts as well such as Williamsburg Brooklyn in latest years). The buildings, whose façades decorated with cast iron, went through face-lift and their value has been increased rapidly. When touring the Soho, pay attention to the buildings, especially along Spring and Grand streets having quite number of them.

The Soho includes nine interesting streets (out of total 26 Soho streets), each one of them can be walked in about 10 minutes' non-stop walk. The following are the most interesting streets in my view.

From East to West (General direction and in parallel): Spring and Prince considered to the most interesting in Mid Soho, as well as Broom and Grand streets south of them.

From South to North (General direction and in parallel): The three streets Broadway, Mercer, and Green Streets considered to be interesting, part stretched along mid-Soho. In addition to these, it is recommended to visit West Broadway, Thompson and Wooster streets as well.

When you walk here, pay attention around. Spring, Grand and Green streets have particularly beautiful buildings.

Frankly saying, there's no way one can experience all in one day however, it is possible to walk along various streets mentioned above for quite few hours, stop where found interesting and return on any other day, over and over again.

Following are listed some of the recommended places to make a stop or visit along theses streets. One must bring into consideration the fact that NYC business is very dynamic and places opened at the time this blog is written can be found closed or out of business. It happens from one day to another.

Streets Walk

Spring Street:

One of the most interesting streets in Soho to walk through. Here is a sample described from East to West:

  • Uncle Boons (7 Spring) – an excellent Thai restaurant, opened for dinners only from 17:30 on.
  • Mother's Ruin (18 Spring) – Drinks and sandwiches bar with special atmosphere, great for a break refreshment.
  • Rice to the Riches (37 Spring) – A café place with excellent deserts based on rice pudding in many flavors. It is a unique place worthwhile tasting.
  • Taim (45 Spring) – Taim means Tasty in Hebrew. A popular Israeli restaurant serving gluten free dishes, Falafel and vegetarian meals.
  • Lombardi's (32 Spring) – a Pizza place with long tradition.
  • Eileen's Special Cheesecake (17 Cleveland St corner of Spring St) – Café with small bakery place specializing in cheesecakes. Located yards away from the Rice to the Riches café.
  • Balthazar (80 Spring) – a French brasserie, a well-known popular NYC institute opened from 7:30 AM to midnight. Among others has a reputation for the excellent French-fries served. Highly recommended. Reservation is needed.
     Adjacent to the brasserie is the Balthazar bakery offering assorted breads, cakes, cookies, including takeaway.
  • MoMA Design Store / HAY at MoMA (81st Spring St, across Balthazar) – MoMa museum store suggesting various designed products and gifts for the house and workplace. Similar MoMa products designed store is located uptown on West 53rd St, just a bit West across the main entrance to the Museum.
  • Vosges Haut-Chocolate (132 Spring)– a store specializing in high quality chocolate products.
  • COS (129 Spring St) – a Swedish fashion store chain.
  • Specialized Brand products stores ,such as Adidas (115 Spring St), Crocs (143 Spring St).
  • Dominique Ansel Bakery (189 Spring)– well know café in NYC, famous by the pastries made by the Chef Dominique Ansel.

Prince Street:

  • The Basilica of St. Patrick's Old Cathedral (273 Mott St. next to 30 Prince) – Quite interesting Cathedral constructed back in the 19th century.
  • International Center of Photography Museum (250 Bowery next to 1 Prince St.) A small museum dedicated to Photographypresents temporary exhibitions.
  • Gucci Art Wall – Gucci company display a contemporary huge mural on a building on Prince St. at Lafayette St., near Crosby st.).This street artwork is changed once or twice a year.

Also consider stepping into the following stores:

  • Polo Ralph Loren Men's Store (109 Prince ) .
  • Apple Store (103 Prince) – The “Temple” for Cell phones, Tablets, Laptops and various Apple's accessories. One of the first new look special designed Apple's stores offering sales, service &support to all Apple products.
  • Dean and DeLuka- see below.

Broadway Street:

Broadway Street along the Soho is a crowded commercialized strip populated with lots of brand and none-brand all type stores.

  • The segment along Broadway stretched between Canal St. (South) to East Houston (North) is loaded by brand names stores such as:
     Levi's, Uniqlo, Victoria Secret, Zara, H&M, Nike, Under-Armor and others.
  • Clifton Benveneto Art Gallery (515 Broadway) – Located on the 6th floor of this typically 19th century structure, decorated by designed cast iron in the front.
  • Dean and DeLuka (560 Broadway, at Prince St.) – A huge store suggesting a wide variety of food and delicatessen in super level quality. Prices are accordingly. It is recommended to pay a visit even when not need to buy something. There are two more stores in the chain located in Manhattan but this one is considered to be the flagship store.

Mercer Street:

  • Ronald Feldman Gallery (31 Mercer next to Grand St).
  • Georgetown Cupcake (111 Mercer) – Bakery and Coffee shop specializes in delicious cupcakes.

Green Street:

Another pretty interesting street of the Soho.

  • Patagonia Soho (72 Green) – A brand name specializes in winter clothing for the outdoors including specially designed for harsh cold weather conditions, top design & quality. Prices accordingly.
  • TASCHEN Store New York (107 Green) – The store of TASCHEN book publisher specializes in arts, photography and others.
  • Sonos Store (101 Green) – high end audio products.

Broom Street:

  • Marie Belle Café (484 Broom between W. Broadway and Wooster St.) – Servicing thick & sweet hot chocolate, French style pastries and other assorted chocolate products.
  • Center for Italian Modern Art (CIMA) 21 Broom next to Crosby St. – One of the best art galleries located in the Soho.
  • Anna Sui(484 Broom) – Super women dress designer including top level accessories. Worth visiting even without purchasing.
  • Isabel Marant (469 Broom) – Super French designer of high-end fashion for women.
  • Dance With Me Soho (466 Broom) – Studio for ballroom dancing, Latin, Hip-hop, and others you name it.
  • Audrey Hepburn Street Art Wall – A beautiful street art painting of Audrey Hepburn, on the corner of Broom St. and Mulberry St. This work was painted by the local painter Tristan Eaton in 2013. There are additional street art paints spread around this area.

Grand Street:

  • Peter Freeman Gallery (140 Grand, between Crosby & Lafayette Streets) – Art gallery presents temporary exhibitions.
  • Team Gallery (83 Grand, between Green & Wooster Streets) . Art gallery presents temporary exhibitions.
  • Ferrara Bakery & Café (195 Grand) – An Italian café and bakery. Specializes in Cannoli and cheese cakes (no additives). As a cheese cakes fan, as far as I'm concerned, they have one of the best New York cheese cakes in town, maybe the best!
  • Discover Outdoors (154 Grand next to Lafayette) – Excellent store for the outdoor activities.

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