Wednesday, January 09, 2008


One of two sentinels to Escolta that stand after the Estero de la Reina is the simple but elegant 6-storey Perez-Samanillo Building. Built in 1928, it is now knowm as the First United Building.
A fine example of Art Deco, the building was designed by Paris-born Andres Luna de San Pedro, the same designer of the St. Cecilia Hall of the 100-year old St. Scholastica College, and the Chapel of the Crucified Christ (c. 1927) of St. Paul University (along Pedro Gil St.) De San Pedro is the son of artist and Philippine hero Juan Luna and Paz Pardo de Tavera. It is currently owned by the Sylianteng family who bought it in the 1960's.
Its gates feature the distinct chevron design, while its facade feature the strong lines of triangles and squares broken by stylized floral patterns. It's now sporting a white color, but articles said that it used to sport a coral pink hue, although it's been explained that this was only during former city mayor (now, city mayor once again) Alfredo Lim. The current owners said that when they bought the building, it already sported its current color. (Source:

The building also has an elevator that, in lieu of lighted numbers to indicate which floor you are already on, has a dial similar to those found in US buildings built during the same period.

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