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Hidden along a quiet residential street in Cubao is a stately Filipino mansion that has opened its doors to the public as a living museum and boutique events space. The MiraNila Heritage House and Library in Cubao is an Art Deco House originally built in 1929. The mansion was built at the highest point of San Juan Del Monte district (now part of the Cubao district of Quezon City) a full ten years before the Charter of Quezon City was passed.
In 2011, the National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP) declared it a heritage house in recognition of it being one of the few houses from the American Colonial era that managed to keep most of its original furnishings intact. Unlike other heritage sites that have gone massive restorations or reconstruction, the design of the MiraNila House remains largely unaltered.
This well-preserved family home exemplifies the creative and adaptive reuse of a heritage site. The mansion was owned and designed by Philippine Women’s University co-founder Francisca Tirona-Benitez and statesman Conrado Benitez, who was one of those who helped draft the 1935 Philippine Constitution. The mansion features architecture inspired by villas in Florence, Italy seen in travel catalogs brought home from a Europe trip blended with Filipino architecture and furniture. The Art Deco design, popular during the 1920s and 30s, and characterized by the use of lines, geometric patterns, and stylized interpretation of nature, is evident in the space.
The mansion has four floors, including a small tower attic room that serves as a lookout point for the estate. In every room of the mansion, one can step back in time and marvel at the unique furniture collections and decor from the family’s travels. The second floor of the ancestral house contains a library and reading room home to 4,000 books, paintings, letters, and art collections, which tell of the mansion’s rich history. Paintings, including original Amorsolo paintings, and the family’s former study desks can also be found in the space. The bedrooms, bathrooms, dining area, and unique decor all remain perfectly preserved.
As one of the only two declared heritage houses in Metro Manila, the MiraNila House is well worth a visit for those looking for somewhere new to go around the metro. It’s also worth considering for your events, celebrations, and city staycations, especially if you’re a history buff.
The grounds around the house contain a chapel, boutique hotel, modern events space, and a Bizu restaurant. The space is popular as an events space for weddings and launches, as it can host both indoor and outdoor venues for intimate gatherings or family events. Gallery MiraNila by The Blue Leaf is a Spanish-inspired events hall surrounded by lush gardens.
After touring the house itself, visitors can enjoy a drink or fine dining meal at Bizu at MiraNila. This lovely, secluded branch is ready to serve walk-in guests with its array of culinary desserts and main dishes.
For those who want to stay longer, the estate also contains unique hotel accommodations through The Henry Hotel, a boutique hotel chain with luxury suites, perfect for casual getaways, celebrations, and photoshoots.
How to visit MiraNila Heritage House
It’s best to call beforehand to ensure that no events are taking place on the day of your planned visit. For general admission, tours to MiraNila Heritage House are available every Saturday at 10:00 a.m. or 1:00 pm. On other days, tours can be arranged by appointment for a minimum of 7 people and a maximum of 20 people.
Admission is P400 per person
Guided tours last approximately 90 minutes long
Visit https://www.miranila.org/ for more details.
MiraNila Heritage House & Library is located at 24 Mariposa Street, Quezon City, Metro Manila, Philippines.