SoHo is named for its location: South of Houston Street. It lays between Houston and Canal Street in one direction, and Crosby Street to Sixth Avenue in the other. New York City’s premier fashion hub, this super chic lower manhattan neighborhood is home to the city’s most posh and fashionable, in a neighborhood dense with boutiques, designer shops, galleries and artist’s lofts. Despite its modern “a la mode” identity, SoHo is a small neighborhood with a very specific personality, still boasting quite a bit of its Old New York charm. SoHo has always been fashionable, with huge department stores such as Lord and Taylor and Tiffany & Co opening in the 19th century. Once an industrial hub with factories and production spaces churning out textiles and other products, the area went through many changes, settling on sweatshops before artists began moving in and taking over the neighborhood in the 1960’s, moving into abandoned factory spaces with their advantage of wide open, spacious floor plans and dirt cheap rent. The now famous artists lofts of SoHo were made. These artists virtually created the neighborhood, coining its name and giving it the laid-back, trendy artistic feel that now permeates the streets. You will notice many flavors from the olden times, from original cobblestone streets to opulent cast-iron architecture. Before steel became widely popular in building, SoHo was built largely with cast iron, which was produced in New York, and ornate cast iron facades and even buildings became popular in the area. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the Cast Iron Historic District actually includes almost all of the neighborhood, protecting SoHo’s collection of uniquely ornate historic cast-iron buildings. Essentially, the neighborhood is named a National Historic Landmark. These days, SoHo boasts a lot of old architecture, like its prewar tenements and lofts, as well as plenty of modern buildings and small art galleries.