Silahis Center in Intramuros: Showcase of local heritage and artistry
Updated as of February 1, 2021
Further down southeast of General Luna Street from San Agustin Church sits a historic three-story souvenir shop. Silahis Center is a well-known source of local handicrafts and furniture in the city and is a tourist attraction in itself.
Established in 1966 as Silahis Arts and Artifacts, the business produces a wide variety of locally-made products which showcase the heritage of the Philippines and its peoples. It inspires a deeper appreciation not only of the local culture and artistry but also of the indigenous communities.
Silahis Center was built in Intramuros in 1985 for the purpose of making Filipino heritage known throughout the country and around the world through various arts and crafts. The culture and tradition of the indigenous people greatly reflect on the products of Silahis Center, which are mostly made of traditional materials, like wood, bamboo, and plant fibers, and manually designed with intricate patterns.
Their products range from antiques, paintings, and sculptures to furniture, woodenware, and accessories. Their best-selling products include the woven Binali basket, which is a classic Ifugao handwoven basket, and the Banca bench made from solid Ipil wood and natural abaca fibers with the cushion wrapped in T’nalak cloth and hand-dyed using the Ikat method.
Not only is Silahis Center a great place to go shopping for locally-made products. It is also one of the best places to visit to look around and learn about the local culture. In fact, it looks more like a huge museum than a store.
Address: Silahis Center, 744 General Luna Street, Intramuros, Manila
Business hours: 10 a.m. – 7 p.m.
Contact numbers: 02-527-2111; 0905-954-3692
Facebook page: www.facebook.com/SilahisCenter
This also appears in the February issue of Philippine Primer Japanese magazine.