Philippine Heritage Homes- guidebook launching

Casa Manila, Intramuros , Manila-Philippines

Dr. Jaime Laya and Senator Loren Legarda

It was a sunny afternoon when members of the Advocates for Heritage Preservation , Heritage Conservation Society , Ancestral Houses of the Philippines , National Commission for the Culture and the Arts , Intramuros Administration , Turalba Foundaton and Anvil Publishing Company launched the book entitled ” Philippine Heritage Homes ” a guidebook.

invited guests and members of the AHP facebook wearing yellow t-shirts

The event started early in the morning when some of the members decided to have a photo-walk in some of the restored houses within Intramuros .

A short talk about the importance of the ancestral house and the need to preserve them .

Architect Maria Christina Turralba and Dr. Jaime C. Laya

Facebook page members who signed several weeks before ( thread ) of Ancestral House of the Philippines were given a 20% discount by Anvil Publishing House and the authors. The book is co-authored by Dr. Jaime C. Laya , Architect Maria Cristina Turalba and Architect Martin I. Tinio Jr.

Ancestral House of the Philippines book

 There are already plans to  to have a copy of Philippine Heritage Homes Volume 2., which according to the authors  will feature some heritage houses of Visayas and even in Mindanao .


I do not have an idea on the number of books ( quantity) that  were printed by the publishing company,  since it affects the pricing of the book.  I wish they printed more and make it hardbound so  it can be read by more people ( softbound books tend get easily worn-out due to usage) and distributed it to libraries and even useful handbook for history, architecture, heritage , fine arts . The price range of the book is Php495 which is a bit on the middle- range  ( some  guidebooks  / coffee table book /  books ) cost cheaper with almost same number of pages, quality of the paper , book binding, celebrity book author involved. The entire book is about 135 pages which only represent homes located in Luzon area.

Despite the 20% discount at Php 400 , The guidebook is a little but pricey but is cheaper compared to any paper back book.  The good side of having this pocket size book is the ability of any architecture lover to comfortably bring them anywhere as to compared to the large coffee table size books which cost several thousands of pesos!

Typo Error

The book can be easily read in just one sitting . We have notice some typo errors in the scientific name,  one such error spotted –  ” The interiors of the house was sourced from the Bicol Region . The architectural detail of the interior is a celebration of the gem of Philippine hardwood , narra ( Ptecarpus indicus).” page 59 Sabino -Santos House of Region III.

The scientific name of narra, our national tree is Pterocarpus indicus .

Website link:

Kew Botanic Garden:

National Tropical Garden :

 Some blurred photos on pages 41 and 53. While there were 22 heritage homes that were featured in the book, There are some houses that was featured in the book which had no actual historical value but was reconstructed based on old plans created by the Intramuros Administration from period houses in San Nicolas and old-Intramuros like Casa Manila page 28 to 33, Museo De La Salle page 42 to 45 .

Transplanted Houses like Casa Luna, Casa Candaba, Casa Jaen I, Casa Bizantina , Casa Hidalgo, Casa Alberto , Casa Unisan which is now at the Las Casas de Alcuzar in Bagac, Bataan province.

Handful of Information

The book is loaded with a lot of handful of information about the history , culture, architectural details of the homes . The authors are all expert .

Additional Information

The authors must allot at least 1 or 2 pages for the feature of Las Casas de Alcuzar since ( 7) seven of the heritage homes featured in the guidebook is now currently located in the resort.  I hope that they must also include if the homes that they feature are OPEN to the public or they are just for private functions. I lend the book to one of my friend who wanted to visit one of the heritage homes that was featured in the book but there was no contact information provided.

Overall , I would give a 7.90 Rating out of 10 Points to this guidebook , It is well-written and there are a lot of good photos.

The book is available at Anvil Publishing Incorporated and leading Bookstores nationwide !

Anvil Publishing Inc.


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