SoHo, or South of Houston (pronounced “house – ton”) consists of 26 blocks and approximately 500 buildings. Beautiful side streets are “paved” with Belgian blocks or cobblestones. Artists moved into the lofts here in the 70’s and 80’s and started a phenomenon known today at the “SoHo effect” or gentrification. Few artist can afford to live here today amongst the boutiques, restaurants and posh shops. A pedestrian’s dream, if you don’t mind crowds.
Once the haunt of artists, this cobblestoned downtown neighborhood (which runs roughly between Houston and Grand streets from Broadway to West Broadway) is now chockablock with high-end clothing, jewelry, cosmetics and housewares stores; as such, it’s the city's mecca for concentrated retail therapy. While some locals gripe that it’s too mall-like, you can still find vestiges of the area’s old funky spirit, in scattered independent boutiques and also in the wares of street vendors, who sell crafts and artwork along the sidewalks each day.