Cebu plays a significant role in the history of the Spanish colonization in the Philippines. Magellan docked in the island of Mactan, Colon became the oldest street of the country, University of San Carlos is arguably the oldest school in Asia and so forth.
One of the remaining Spanish landmarks that is still standing is Casa Gorordo. It’s amazing how everything is well-preserved after all this time.
This casa was built by Alejandro Reynes y Rosales. In 1863, it was purchased by a Spanish merchant named Juan Isidro de Gorordo. From 1863 – 1979, the house was occupied by different generations of the Gorordo famly including the first Cebuano bishop, Bishop Juan Gorordo.
The house depicts the typical Spanish styled home and gives a glimpse of what it was like to live the Ilustrados life. Most of the materials used in the construction of the house were wood and stone, while the floor was made out of molave and the roof with terra cotta roof tiles. The locals dubbed it as bahay na bato.
In 1980, the Ramon Aboitiz Foundation Inc. (RAFI) purchased the house and fell under its Cultural Heritage Program. The house had to undergo some renovations, but it has kept its authenticity and natural Spanish aura. It was then opened to the public in 1983 as a museum.
The first time I visited was for a field trip in grade school. I vividly remember entering the prayer room and looking at all the religious images and life size statues.
You can also see many wooden carvings, kitchen utensils, household items, art collections, clothes and many other valuables that will take you back in time.
The furniture in the house is mostly made from rattan, molave or narra which have baroque designs. This was what it was like to live a truly sophisticated life back then.
Casa Gorordo Museum is located at No.35 Lopez Jaena Street, Barangay Parian Cebu City. The museum is open to the public from Tuesdays to Sundays from 10:00am to 6:00pm. It is closed on Mondays and on holidays.
Foreign tourists (adults) – Php 70.00
Foreign tourists (students) – Php 50.00
Local tourists (adults) – Php 40.00
Local tourists (college students) – Php 15.00
Local tourists ( high school and elementary students) – Php 10.00
Rates may change without prior notice
*Photos by Jeemah Villaverde.