It’s hard to find a higher- quality or more picturesque shopping district than Soho. The cobblestone streets are lined with beautiful and spacious cast- iron buildings, and their high-ceilinged stores sell some of the best designs in clothes, furniture, and household goods you’ll find in North America. Stroll around and you’re certain to stumble on something that will give you inspiration. Here’s a tour that takes you to some of the more interesting shops in the area.
Check out some of the best in contemporary and unique furniture at Matter (405 Broome St); the gallery and showroom is a resource for architects and interior designers to keep tabs on what’s hot. If you’re in the mood for some luxury lingerie, satin sheets, corsets, or gold-plated handcuffs, head to Kiki de Montparnasse (79 Greene St). The change rooms have three choices of lighting: before, during, and after.
Purl Patchwork (459 Broome St) has a great selection of beautiful fabrics ranging from Japanese and French imports to reproductions of Victorian-era designs.
Swiss Army (136 Prince St) has more than just knives. There are also great watches, luggage, and clothes. You can see or buy the very best in music photography of the last half-century at Morrison Hotel Gallery (116 Prince St, 2nd Floor), which also has great temporary exhibits. The Apple Store (103 Prince St) is New York’s flagship store and holds hourly free presentations in the auditorium on anything you need to know about Apple products.
For great outdoor apparel and gear for hiking and climbing head to Patagonia (72 Greene St). Further north on Greene St the elegant frocks at Stella McCartney (112 Greene St) never cease to amaze.
For those drawn to more morbid subjects, there’s Evolution (120 Spring St). Buy framed butterflies or insects, a stuffed rat, or a human skull for $895 at this quirky store selling natural history collectables.
MoMA Design Store (81 Spring St) presents two floors of carefully chosen products ranging from chairs to notebooks, scarves, and watches by classic and new designers. Great for gift shopping.
Housing Works (130 Crosby St) is a neighborhood favorite in thrift stores rife with amazing finds, while Prada (575 Broadway) is worth visiting for the sensational Rem Koolhas-designed interior.
Honor the kid in you or in your life at the McNally Jackson Books (52 Prince St). This enormous retail space sells thousands of high-quality and educational children’s books and toys. A little further along, find inexpensive stylish clothes at the world flagship store of Uniqlo (546 Broadway) – think H&M with a Japanese minimalist twist.
Finally, Kate Spade (454 Broome St) is a new American classic handbag, luggage, clothing, and shoe designer with a slightly quirky and retro feel. For great men’s bags and clothes try Ghurka (65 Prince St).