Don Antonio Bautista Heritage House in my hometown, Malolos, Bulacan is one of the landmarks that make Malolos a historic district. I’m sharing with you images of this heritage house that will take you back in time.
Don Antonio Bautista Ancestral House: Notice the Greek-style figures framing the windows. A rare find in Philippine ancestral houses.
I already have over 50 posts so far in this blog and it came upon me that I haven’t even featured my own hometown. It’s easy to skip the place you call your hometown where everything else looks familiar and ordinary. It was not until now that I realized I’ve been overlooking a city with so much historical treasures.
Every Juan will associate Malolos with Barasoian Church. It wouldn’t be printed in the Philippine peso bill without a reason. However, Malolos is not just about Barasoain Church. Much so as the more popular Silay City in Bacolod, Malolos is home to Spanish-era houses that served important parts of shaping the Philippines’ colonial past.
One such structure retained until today is the Don Antonio Bautista Heritage House. It is located along the Camestizuhan District in Malolos town proper. In this photo story, I attempt to take you back in time. Hop in as I say, “Time space warp, ngayon din.”
These figurines wearing the Filipiñana dress, displayed below the staircase, greeted us as we entered the house.
The Grand Wooden Staircase
So what’s the historical value of this old house? It used to serve as the office of the Secretaria de Fomento or Ministry of Interior Affairs, and later became a municipal hall, primary school and even a Japanese camp.
The most famous personality who visited this house is no other than the Filipino national hero, Dr. Jose Rizal, to form La Liga Filipina. Unfortunately, the plan did not become reality because days after this meeting, he was arrested and exiled in Dapitan.
The spacious living room reflects opulence during the colonial era
The living room is my favorite part of the house. It displays old wooden furniture which up to this time can accommodate anyone’s butt. This spacious room is also adorned with crystal chandeliers, and large paintings on the wall and ceilings by prominent Filipino artists.
A rocking chair is a winner in any house
Iron ceiling with 3D effect painting, very European
Family portraits of Baustista descendants
The formal comedor (living room)
Veranda at the side of the formal comedor
Next to the formal comedor is the informal comedor
Saw these angels watching over me inside a small room. Not sure exactly whether it should be hair-raising or a glorious thing.
The house is now under the care of the well-known Mr. Dez Bautista, a set designer, writer and historian. Unfortunately, Mr. Dez was not in the house when we paid a visit on a weekend. It would have been a different experience to have him tell us his own stories of the house.
Overall, I enjoyed getting around the Don Antonio Bautista Heritage house as every corner was photogenic. Likewise, the feel of Spanish era inside the house makes me want to practice Spanish as I caught sight of the entrada, salon, cuarto, muebles, veranda, comedor, sillas, ventana, mesa, plato, aparador…okay, that’s just as far as I could get.