Many years ago the city tore down this neighborhood destroying Paganini's home and many historical buildings. You can see a "column of shame" in the far corner of Piazza Sarzano which talks about the event. Recently Piazza Sarzano has received a facelift and it's much nicer and really a very pleasant place to stroll, shop and visit Sant'Agostino museum. it's a great place for tourist to start their visit of the city from the port area, because they can take the metro from the port to Piazza Sarzano and they are just 7 minutes from the city center, Piazza De Ferrari. But don't rush from Piazza Sarzano-they have just added 5-6 typical outdoor shops with cheese, meats, fruit and gifts that are very cute! There is a nice indoor/outdoor café for lunch and you are very close to Santa Maria di Castello (see reviews) piazza Erbe where students hang out and Campopisano (see review). Also the Sant' Agostino museum has a great "60 Minutes walking tour" of the museum in English, German and soon French; its a great museum to see many monuments that were a part of Genova's history.
When you are ready to visit Piazza de Ferrari, take the atmospheric street from Sarzano leading to Porta Soprana-it's filled with wonderful small shops, a fantastic place for sweets, restaurants and gelato. This is a great neighborhood that will give you the real feel of Genova, take you off the beaten tourist track and oozes with atmosphere!