December 24, 2017

Casa Mariquit in Iloilo

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  • If you’re traveling to an old and historically rich city like Iloilo, visiting ancestral houses is an indispensable item on your itinerary. Some old houses have turned into museums while some have been adapted for commercial use.

    In the case of Casa Mariquit, it’s neither of the two.

    Located inside a small tree-lined street and overshadowed by an old banyan tree (locally known as balete), Casa Mariquit is a two-storey ancestral home privately owned by the Javellana and Lopez kin. It is not officially a museum but the current owners are not denying entrance to the people who seek a door to the past. And indeed once you enter Casa Mariquit, as if your surroundings turn sepia, you will feel like you entered a different time dimension.

    Casa Mariquit was built in 1803 by a banker, Ramon Javellana. Then, it became the home of his granddaughter, Mariquit, and her husband Fernando Lopez who also served as the Vice President of the Philippines in the 1950’s.

    The house, well-maintained, still contains many of its original furniture and old framed photographs hanging on the walls. Its original wood and red brick architecture has been preserved well, although some restoration has also been done. The housekeeper who looks after the house can also serve as your tour guide; he can eloquently share bits of information about the house.

    You can walk into Casa Mariquit anytime of the day and enter the house for a small fee of Php 50. It is situated along Santa Isabel Street near Shell gas station.


    Address: Santa Isabel St., Jaro, Iloilo City
    Operating hours: 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. (every day)
    Entrance fee: Php 50

    This feature appears in the December 2017 issue of Philippine Primer Japanese magazine.
    Written by Rizelle “Rei” Leaño

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