Why would anyone want to live in SOMA when other neighborhoods have so much SF charm? What am I missing aside from CalTrain (and yummy food trucks)?

Asked by Lorriehastruck, San Francisco, CA Mon Mar 4, 2013

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Alina Aeby’s answer
Alina Aeby, Agent, San Francisco, CA
Mon Mar 4, 2013
Sometimes, this part of the city is generalized as SOMA, but we must make the distinction between SOMA or South of Market and SoBe or South Beach. SoBe means new developments, with amenities and concierge, most of them high rise buildings, mostly between 4t St and Embarcadero.

Technically, SOMA is the area between Market and Townsend and 4th St and Van Ness, characterized by long blocks, dotted by newish small and medium lofts or condo buildings, warehouses, home decoration stores, start-up offices, some run down churches and buildings, trendy clubs, cafes and restaurants. Here and there you can spot some Victorian and Edwardian buildings, lending the necessary extra charm to the usually grey blocks. There are also rehabilitation clinics and residential hotels mostly along the 6th Street corridor. Aside of the easy access to freeways and public transit, the neighborhood has an undeniable urban cool about it and it continues to transform on a daily basis. Just watch the Folsom and the 7th St corridors. I dare to say that they have changed tremendousely in the past 2 years.

SOMA has the potential of becoming a coherent neighborhood and it has not been developed at its full capacity yet.

While we have a lot of others well established, tree-lined neighborhoods, some people might appreciate the renewal, Phoenix - like rebirth of SOMA, depending on the different stages of their lives.


Alina Aeby-Broker Associate
Pacific Union International
1 vote
leaseoppo, , San Francisco, CA
Tue Nov 19, 2013
Good question, Living in Soma is a gives you superb access to all major transport options down the peninsula, east or heading north. In Soma you can walk to the ferry building the baseball park the financial district and all of the excellent restaurants and coffee shops are very nearby not only that but you can live in a great condo with superb facilities and a concierge in a stable secure building often only a block or two away from laundry, banks whole foods etc. In summary, it offers efficient low stress living without compromising the assortment of things that are important for you with city living.

0 votes
Leopold A Ro…, , San Francisco, CA
Mon Mar 4, 2013
With respect, “charm” is a purely subjective term.

Louis Leroy was a well respected art critic. To show his disdain for a new a school of art he coined the word “impressionism”. He was especially critical of as gentleman called Claude Monet. I’m certain he would have found that his work lacked “charm”.

Louis Leroy. Claude Money.

Manhattan. Charlottesville

SOMA. The Mission.

Real Estate Broker 00849905
Attorney at Law
400 Montgomery 505
San Francisco CA 94104
Office: 415.781.3000
0 votes
Kevin Ho, Agent, San Francisco, CA
Mon Mar 4, 2013
Having seen so much of the city, there are differences everywhere. "Charm," for example, may lack any appeal to some folks. Instead these folks may be after freeway access, amenity-rich buildings, concierge services, modern construction, loft spaces, rent control-free homes, air conditioning that isn't fog-based... you name it. The nice thing is that we have enough variety for most tastes and preferences in San Francisco.
0 votes
Jed Lane, Agent, Petaluma, CA
Mon Mar 4, 2013
The actual might leave a bit to be desired when compared to the potential. When the area is built out there will be more services and things to do. It is becoming a neighborhood tight now.
The area is a destination for many, including myself, as I ride my bike.
Having lived on the west side of San Francisco for most of my life I would like to live there now. To be able to walk to downtown, the Ferry Building , the ball park etc would be fantastic. OK I'd rather live on Telegraph Hill but that isn't very likely and the size of the newer condos beat the size of the older ones.
Eventually SOMA, Mission Bay and Dogpatch will all rival North Beach as a neighborhood in my opinion.
0 votes
Gabriel Rojas, Agent, San Francisco, CA
Mon Mar 4, 2013
Hello Lorrie,

SoMa really does have plenty to offer but it really comes down to the lifestyle you're trying to live of course. It's a younger part of town so you may not have the smaller mom and pop shops and older homes there. Also, this area is a lot newer in terms of residential living than the older ones and is still growing. The architecture is most definitely different and it sounds like it's just not the kind of place you'd want to call home.

For many people, SoMa is a great place because of convenience to the freeways and to Caltrain. I do a lot of work in SoMa and I love it. Spend a bit more time in the area and you may just change your mind.
0 votes
Lance King, Agent, San Francisco, CA
Mon Mar 4, 2013
It all depends on what you want? SOMA has tons of great restaurants and bars, walking distance to many other neighborhoods and their restaurants and bars, close to public transportation, and easy access to the freeway and ballpark.

You also find a lot more lofts for those who like lofts, and often is walking distance to work for many. I lived there for a few years and loved it. We moved when we had a baby.
0 votes
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