Vigan City, the Early Chapter

Chinese and Spanish Influences

UNESCO Vigan Heritage Village
 Vigan was the trade port since pre-colonial era. It was the hub for goods exchange of Chinese merchants and sailors to people from mountain region on the Central Luzon Island.
Colonial era, late 16th century 
Juan de Salcedo, Spanish Conquistador traveled to the North from Manila for the first time in June 1572. Later he was appointed by King Philip II of Spain to be Province Mayor of Ilocos. Vigan was the Spanish control centre in the North.

Vigan also became the centre of Christianity. It has been the residence of the Nueva Segovia's Archdiocese since 1759. Currently, Vigan is the capital of Ilocos Sur Province.

Plaza Salcedo, Vigan City
Vigan City Urban Planning 
It was developed as typical Spanish town under the Law of Indies in 18th century. They must have park or plaza at the city centre and placed along the road alignment.

Vigan Plaza was planned City Hall as administrative centre. Archbishop's Palace and St. Paul Church was religious centre. St 'Paul College was enclosed.

Most of Vigan Houses were owned by Filipino-Chinese traders. They were lived in residential zone which was separated from the Spainish rulers. When the houses are destroyed by catastrophic events, they are usually created by the original.

Vigan Houses along Calle Crisologo
Vigan Style Building, Vigan City
Vigan House Style 
Former houses in this region were built with lightweight materials such as wood. When Vigan was ruled by the Spanish, the stone masonry houses were built like European.

With the threat of earthquakes, typhoons, and fire frequently, house style has been developed with the perfect blend between East and West. Finally, Vigan house style is robust, beautiful and functional to superior.

Vigan House Characteristics
  •  1st floor is shop, storage and carriage area
  • 2nd floor comprises of grand stair way, living room, bedroom, dining room, kitchen, toilet, open terrace connected to dining area or kitchen. 
  • Thick stone wall on 1st floor 
  • Light wood structure on 2nd floor
  • Soft light and good airflow 
  • Large wood windows / Capiz (Glass Shell Window)
  • Clay roofs and eaves are extended to protect sunlight and rain  
See UNESCO World Heritage Site of Vigan City                                      

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