"Multiple Personality Neighborhood"
One of my favorite neighborhoods because we've been to a number of house parties (My friends Patrick and Joel have an amazing loft with with a westward-facing floor-to ceiling window) here, south of Market may not appear to be a haven for pedestrian SFnewbies. It's been really industrial for a long time, with lots of scaffolding, temporary sidewalks, and under construction signs and detours. The first sighting of the big box Costco is a little bit disappointing. But the new AT&T Park's closeness has changed that, somewhat. As a mom of two, there are lots of reasons to love SOMA. Prior to children, I took my then boyfriend to a rock climbing/dance performance at a south of market performance space. We crossed the border to the mission to go to Charanga (on Mission) for Cuban food. Decent, yummy, great simmered sauces, but looks sketchy when you go in. I used to like the Metreon for their kidzibit on the top level, but Westfield developers have turned it into the space into a well marketed mostly empty shell. But there's a lot more the family likes to do outdoors here, whether it's walking along the Embarcadero, getting a scoop of ice cream at Mitchells, or exploring Yerba Buena gardens. For shopping, I have picked up a couple of unique things for my kids' rooms at Ma Maison, though they mostly have home decor, table settings, etc...Easy to get to from the south bay, as the cal train terminates there.