domingo, 7 de mayo de 2017

Discovering Lima, Historical Center, Colonial Houses (IV)

Although the Historical Center of Lima is quite neglected in comparison to other major capitals of the region (a recent poll of La República newspaper shows that 81% of voters support this affirmation, compared to 19% that says the opposite), there are some colonial houses that are authentic hidden treasures among the streets of the city. 

We don’t want to enter into a discussion on whether or not the downtown's recovery policies are correct, but in this post we list some of the main colonial buildings that are worth to visit if we have time in our visit. 

The architecture of this period join the Spanish influence, with large facades, marble stairs that arise from large courtyards of tiles, wooden balconies and strong Moorish influence. After the Eighteenth Century with the Viceroy Amat, begins a period French made wood paneled, medallions, feminine curves and vivid colors such as indigo, yellow, green or pink.

Torre Tagle Palace

This mansion located in the third block of  Ucayali street was completed in 1735 by José B. Tagle, with an ornate Baroque portico (limenians says it’s the best of Lima) and Mudejar influence. Its portico has two impressive balconies carved in wood, with a bright churrigueresque Sevillian patio inside. 

On the second floor we’ll find the Sala de los Tratados (Hall of Treaties), which has furnitures of the colonial era. At the present time it is the headquarters of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, reason why its access is restricted. It is recommended to call the cultural office to request a visit. SCHEDULE: Mon-Fri 9.00 to 13.00 and 15.00 to 17.00. Closed Saturdays and Sundays. Telephone: (01) 311-2400.

Torre Tagle Palace, Historical Center, Colonial Houses Lima

House of Pilates

The current headquarters of the National Institute of Culture is located in Jiron Ancash (Ancash street) 390. Its construction dates back to 1590 and shows two balconies. After the 1740 earthquake lost its great facade and the balconies of neogothic court. Its facade still shows the shields of Esquivel and the marquises of Valle Umbroso.

In the first courtyard there are columns of granite, unique building in Lima with this particularity. According to the commentary by the traditionalist Ricardo Palma, there is a dark legend around this mansion, since the Portuguese Jews who occupied this house about 1635, would perform ceremonies in which they desecrated sacred images. 

Other sources assert that the name of Pilate is attributed by the similarity with the House of Pilate of Seville or with the house of the same Pilates in Jerusalem. SCHEDULE: Mon-Fri 8:00 am to 1:00 pm and 2:00 pm to 5:00 pm. Free admission.

House of Pilates, Historical Center, Colonial Houses Lima

Aliaga House

Located in the popular Jiron de la Unión (Union street) 224, adjacent to the Post Office, it belonged to one of Pizarro's followers in 1535 and has been inherited from generation to generation by members of this family. After the earthquake of 1746 underwent several modifications; Currently has an eclecticism similar to many colonial houses.

On the facade, like so many others, we can observe a republican balcony of carved wood. The entrance of neoclassical style is of about century XVIII. We found engraved the initials J.A.P (Juan de Aliaga y de la Puente) with carved heads of a Greek goddess and a mythological character with beard. 

At the entrance, a large staircase has railings of mahogany balusters and Carrara marble steps. Next to the reception lobby there is a beautiful sculpture of Cristobal Colon (Christopher Columbus). In its interior we discover a beautiful Gothic chapel with an ivory crucifix dating from the Eighteenth Century. SCHEDULE: This house can be visited through Lima Tours.

Aliaga House, Historical Center, Colonial Houses Lima

De la Riva House

This house is located in Jiron Ica 426 (Ica street) and dates from the 18th century. Its exteriors, like much of the colonial mansions of the Historical Center, have balconies carved in wood. This building is the current headquarters of the Cultural Association ‘Entre Nous’ and the interior halls retain most of their original elements. Its restoration was carried out by the architect Rafael Marquina and finished in 1952. SCHEDULE: Mon-Fri 10.00 a.m. to 13.00 p.m. and 2.00 a.m. to 4.00 pm. Fee S / 5.

De la Riva House, Historical Center, Colonial Houses Lima

The House of Oquendo

The House of Oquendo or Palace of Osambela is located in the Jirón Conde de Superunda (Conde de Superunda street) Nº 298, was finished of construction in 1807 and continues - like the rest of colonial houses of the historical center - with the traditional eclectic style of the Lima of the 1700. It disposes in its facade of five balconies and a viewpoint that the owner (Martín de Osambela) who used them to observe the arrival of the spanish galleons to the Port of Callao. SCHEDULE: The administrator Juan Manuel Ugarte accepts visits in advance. Mon-Fri 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Phone: (01) 427-7987.

The Oquendo House, Historical Center, Colonial Houses Lima

These buildings we have succinctly described  represent a look at the colonial past of Lima, the genesis of this city and what would later be the stamentized society of the time. If you have a time in Lima, take a few hours to discover them.

May 2017

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