Iloilo City is one of the Philippines’ oldest cities. Before the Spanish invaders arrived in Panay, Aeta tribes and Malayan settlers were already living in the island with their own ways of politics, religious beliefs, traditions and trade with the Chinese and other Southeast Asian Kingdoms.

Under the Spanish colonization, the weaving industry began to flourish making Iloilo the textile capital of the Philippines in the 1800’s. After half a century, the Port was opened and it started to export sugar to Europe, the United States, Australia and England. With so much developments in its Business district, Iloilo was the country’s most important city next to Manila during those times.

Many prominent families who were sugar barons have become influential in the city and in the entire country as well. They built grandiose mansions, houses and even commercial buildings all over Iloilo City. Here are some of the preserved heritage houses that are now considered as the City’s historical treasures.

Some whose doors are opened to the public for tours let the Ilonggos of the present generation and the tourists to have a glimpse of how it was to live in the past and know their stories.

1. Nelly Gardens

2. Camiña Balay nga Bato

3. Casa Mariquit

4. Lizares Mansion

5. Sinamay House


6. Rosendo Mejica Museum

7. Celso Ledesma House

8. Casa Rizaliana

9. Doane Baptist Bible Institute

10. Sanson y Montinola House

11. Eusebio Villanueva House

12. Joaquin Ledesma House

13. Lopez Boat House

14. Loring House

15. Lopez-Vito House

16. Arroyo House

17. Consing Mansion

Source: Robert J. Hammerslag

18. Pison House

19. Lopez Mansion

Source: SSC-Iloilo

20. Juan Ledesma Mansion

21. Montinola-Jaen House

Source: SSC-Iloilo

22. Magdalena Jalandoni House

Source: SSC-Iloilo

23. Sanson Mansion 

24. Locsin Ancestral House

25. Concepcion Chalet

26. 1935 Pison Mansion in San Jose Molo

From | Dr. Emiliano Hudtohan