Art Deco Buildings in the Philippines

Art Deco is a type of architecture highlighted by clear lines, geometrical patterns and vibrant colors. Many of the Art Deco buildings were built in the 1920’s to the 1930’s. There was a revival of Art Deco style in the 1950’s to the 1960’s.

Some of the legendary architects of Art Deco buildings are Pablo S. Antonio, Luis Maria Z. Araneta, Juan M. Arellano, Andres Luna de San Pedro, Juan F. Nakpil and Fernando H. Ocampo.

The Art Deco buildings of these architects will be the feature in Old Manila for this article. Some are still standing and in use. Others are gone or about to be gone.

Afable Building

Completed: 1932. Architect: Pablo S. Antonio. Status: Standing and in commercial use but deteriorating.

Avenue Theater

Completed: 1930’s. Architect: Juan F. Nakpil. Status: Demolished, 2006. (Today: Padi’s Point)

Capitol Theater

Inauguration: 1934. Architect: Juan F. Nakpil. Status: Demolition ongoing (as of February 2018)

Cebu Provincial Capitol

Inauguration: 1938. Architect: Juan Marcos G. Arellano. Status: In use, government building.

Crystal Arcade

Inauguration: 1931. Architect: Andres Luna de San Pedro. Status: Damaged in 1945, Demolished, 1964. (PNB Buidling erected in 1966, also demolished in 2017-2018)

Far Eastern University

Completed: Late 1930’s. Architect: Pablo S. Antonio. Status: In educational use

First United Building (Perez-Samanillo Building)

Completed: 1928. Architects: Andres Luna de San Pedro and Juan Felipe Nakpil. Status: In commercial use

Ideal Theater

Completed 1933. Architect: Pablo S. Antonio. Status: Damaged by fire and demolished late 1970’s.

Iglesia ni Cristo, F. Manalo, San Juan

Completed: 1952. Architect: Juan Felipe Nakpil. Status: In religious use

Jai Alai Building (Sky Room)

Completed: 1940. Architects: Welton Becket and Walter Wurdeman. Status: Demolished in 2000 (Land currently idle)

Jaro Municipal Hall

Completed: 1934. Architect: Juan Marcos Arellano. Status: Renovated in 2017. In government use (National Museum of the Philippines)

Life Theater

Completed: 1941. Architect: Pablo S. Antonio. Status: In commercial use (small vendor stalls)

Manila Metropolitan Theater

Inaugurated: 1931. Architect: Juan Marcos Arellano. Status: Damaged in 1945. Restored in 1978. Under renovation 2017 to present day.

Saint Cecilia’s Hall

Completed: 1932. Architect: Andres Luna de San Pedro. Status: Destroyed in 1945. Rebuilt 1955. Renovated 1999. In educational use

Scala Theater

Architect: Pablo S. Antonio. Status: Closed, idle, deteriorating.

State Theater

Completed: 1930’s. Architect: Juan Felipe Nakpil. Status: Demolished in 2001 (Today: Emerald Circle)

Times Theater

Completed: 1939. Architect: Luis Maria Z. Araneta. Status: In cinema use

University of Santo Tomas Central Seminary

Completed: 1933. Architect: Fernando H. Ocampo. Status: In educational/religious use

White Cross

Completed: 1938. Architect: Pablo S. Antonio. Status: In orphanage and social work use.

Bellevue Theater

Completed: 1930: Architect: no information. Status: Used for commercial store space leasing.

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