I grew up in Tondo, Manila and yes, I admit I’ve been to Intramuros countless times. To be honest, I never got the chance to fully explore Intramuros back then. I recently revisited this place when I attended a Sunday mass with my family at the Manila Cathedral. After the mass, we strolled along the walled streets of Intramuros and visited some museums.
Although most places in Manila has been modernized (high rise budings and large shopping centers sprouted all over the city), one thing I am sure of is that Intramuros remained its timeless charm.
Let’s get to know more about Intramuros by getting inside the Casa Manila opposite San Agustin Church.
A museum which features the domestic life of the upper class citizen in the 19th century. Built from 1981 to 1983. It is a replica of an 1850’s San Nicolas house that was once located in Calle Jaboneros. It was contracted by Imelda Marcos during 1980’s and modeled on Spanish colonial architecture. It houses rare collections of antique wooden furniture, crystal chandeliers, Chinese ceramic vases, oil paintings and authentic kitchen tools to name a few.
At the ground floor are the Zaguan & Patio, Cabbelariza and the souvenir item store.
The walls of the ground floor are made of Adobe (vulcanic tuff) which was used as the main building material in the Colony during the late 16th to late 19th century. This is the same material to build the walls of Intramuros.
Entresuelo– A sort of mezzanine, the entresuelo usually contained a receiving area for tradesmen, an office, and some bedrooms. Starting from the late 19th century some entresuelo in Intramuros were rented out as an apartments for students enrolled in the different universities.
Cuarto – the room in the entresuelo usually occupied by an unmarried aunt or uncle. Other rooms was used for siesta or for accommodation of an overnight guests.
The second floor displays the finest furnitures in the house. Showing off family’s opulence and status.
Comedor the walls of the dining area were lined with plateras or several side boards which display familys porcelain, silver and glassware. The furniture was used not only for storage but also to impress visitors.
Cocina– This is the typical kitchen in the 19th century. The cement- like top of the stove is made of paste composed of sifted ashes and water. Bread was baked by piling live charcoal along the interior side of the oven, with the bread at the center.
Azotea the azotea serves many purposes. The aljibe or water cistern that supplies water to the household is located here. Activities that require large amount of water is done here like laundry, gardening as well as butchering of pigs and chicken for family meal. Rain water from the roof gutters were collected through the stone column, which led to the filter of charcoal, gravel and sand and then to the cistern.
Various herbs used for cooking are grown in the azotea like tanglad or lemon grass, pandan to name a few.
The guards served as our museum guide. They are friendly and very knowledgeable about everything that inside the museum.
Address：Plaza San Luis Complex, Cor. Real & Gen. Luna Sts. Intramuros, Manila
Museum Hours：9 am – 6 pm
Closed On: Monday
Entrance Fee: Adults Php 75 ; Students/Teachers/Senior Citizens Php 50
Thank you for reading!
God bless always❤️