Thursday, April 30, 2009

Second Peep: Old Town Look Meets Urbanization

Another short walking trip, and a few more discoveries, this time against the fading light of late afternoon.

Another important political personage used to live in this fenced-off property. The late Vicente de Lara, who used to be both governor and congressman of the province, and his family called this place home, situated at the corner of Del Mar and Carmen streets.

Then a few houses away on the opposite side of Carmen Street is this Spanish-inspired two-storey edifice, with the very distinctive front veranda. Or didn’t we call this by its Spanish name, azotea? Living here was the late Tio Loloy Velez, city councilor, medical doctor, and renowned local historian. It has been preserved quite well, down to the unpainted concrete façade. The good doctor being also our family doctor, we used to visit his office on the ground floor of this building. All of us five brothers I believe went through him for our painful rite of passage to adulthood, circumcision.

Finally, next to the Velez residence was that of the Fernandez family, home to a couple of good-looking young ladies as I recall. They were also related to us somewhat, having roots to the Neri clan. But the passage of time has not been kind and unsparing to this once-impressive timber structure, with the blocks of translucent glass studded on the front façade still visible. This allowed outside light to permeate inside, though preventing onlookers from intruding into its privacy.

Another view of the de la Camara house.


  1. I like the old wooden architecture. Take plenty of pictures coz no one builds with it anymore and termites are taking those still around down to the ground. When I build a house here someday I'm going to use the metal supports instead of wood.

  2. Phil:

    How true your words are. Less than a year ago, in my haste I used wooden floor panels for a small portion of the floor in an all concrete building.

    Already termites have been eating it away, even after pre- and post-treatment.

    And this is located in the middle of the city.


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