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A mix of American and Spanish architectural styles, the Lizares Mansion is one of Iloilo City’s most beautiful heritage mansions. It was built in the 1937 by Don Emiliano Lizares, a Jaro-born sugar baron, and stands in testimony of Iloilo’s booming sugar industry during its heydey.
When World War II broke out, the family left for a safe hiding place in Pototan, Iloilo. The mansion was then used as headquarters of the Japanese army. It was believed that the basement became a dumping ground for tortured Filipinos.
After the war, the family went back to live in the mansion, but life was never the same. In 1950, Don Emiliano Lizares died and his widow left for Manila, leasing the mansion to a businessman who turned it into a casino. The city mayor later ordered that the casino be closed, claiming that it corrupted the Ilonggos. After that, the mansion was left to the hands of a caretaker Tio Doroy Finolan who, with his wife, kept it intact.
The Lizares compound along with the mansion was sold to the Domincans in 1962 and became home of Angelicum School Iloilo from 1978. The mansion now serves as the school’s chapel.
The first Angelicum School (now Angelicum College) was founded in Quezon City in 1972. The second was established in Teheran, Iran in 1974 and was later closed when war broke out. In 1978, Angelicum School Iloilo was opened with 70-plus students and four teaching staff.
Angelicum School Iloilo, which occupies the Lizares Mansion compound, has an area of 16,500 square meters along McArthur Drive, Tabuc Suba, Jaro, Iloilo City. The mansion, which is a mixture of American and Spanish architecture, is still one of the most elegant structures in Iloilo.
The Lizares Mansion is located along McArthur Drive in Tabuc Suba, Jaro, Iloilo City. It can easily be reached by both taxis and these jeepney routes: Jaro Liko, Leganes La Paz, or Leganes Hi-way. Remember to tell the driver to drop you off at Angelicum, since it is more known for the school. To get to the front lawn, you need to ask permission from the guard and tell them that you want to take photos. Prior notice is needed if you want to go inside the mansion.