Lower Manhattan, and in particular SoHo and Tribeca, have undergone deep transformations over the decades, more recently it changed from a period of abandonment to becoming the center of “fringe” lifestyle and then into a super hip and chic, fashionable locations where most celebrities who live in the city currently reside. During the 1970s this is where artists wanted to live, huge lofts where you could live and work at the same time. SoHo, and the neighbouring Tribeca, have become a the place to go for high end shopping and super classy innovative restaurants and bars; also due to the number of celebrities that have moved in the area over the recent years.
The cool names of the area are sort of an acronym created from SOuth of HOuston (SoHo)
and TRIangle BElow CAnal (Tribeca). To visit this area usually I just allow myself a day of wondering around the streets, so that I have no pressure for time and can just relax around the coolest shops! My favourite parts of SoHo are between Avenue of the Americas, Broadway above Canal Street, start your day on Prince Street for a breakfast at Chobani, I fell in love with this shop and its amazing greek yogurts! Alternatively try getting up early to visit Dominique Ansel’s Bakery and try New York’s original cronuts, or visit the store in the afternoon to get your hands on other specialties such as frozen s’mores, or the cookie shots. You can’t miss out on seeing West Broadway, Prince Street, Green Street, Mercer Street and Spring Street. A lovely street to visit is Broome Street, filled with its cast iron buildings that were built to decorate the area with cheap materials but have since become characteristic of this area.
Canal Street is the border between SoHo and TriBeCa, here the influence of the nearby Chinatown is strong, as you’ll find a lot of street sellers trying to get you to buy fake watches and bags. Anyway on the stores on this street you’ll find a lot of great bargains, so it might be worth the trip! While you’re here you can’t miss out on visiting Chinatown around Canal Street and Bowery, but also Little Italy. Being Italian the shops and restaurants here are really funny, since there isn’t much that resembles what Italy really is about; but I’m really happy of the fact that there are some proud Italo-Americans who keep their businesses going.
When visiting the city I love reading tips on places to visit from Timeout.com, here is the link for what to do in Soho: http://www.timeout.com/newyork/manhattan/soho-manhattan-neighborhood-guide
Here are my personal favourites:
– Prada: 575 Broadway and Prince
– LXR&CO: 112 Wooster St, between Prince and Spring
Eat & Drink:
– Dean and Deluca: 560 Broadway, corner with Prince St.
– Chobani: 152 Prince St.
– Jack’s Wife Freda: 224 Lafayette St, close to Spring St.
– The Egg Shop: 151 Elizabeth St, close to Kenmare St.
– Balthazar: 80 Spring St
– Dominique Ansel Bakery: 189 Spring St, between Thompson and Sullivan