Heritage Walk: American-era Waterfront Tour in Cebu City

Americans have considerable influences in Cebuano culture. Architecture is one of them. This posts suggests an itinerary for a tour of American-era structures in Cebu City's waterfront. It is a short tour. It can probably be completed in less than half a day.

Aduana Building

Aduana is also known as the Malacañang sa Sugbu. The Aduana building was the customs building during the American occupation of the city. Aduana is a Spanish word. It literally means customs. It is now used as the official residence of the country's president in the Visayas. This building was built in 1910.  This building also fronts the oldest part of Cebu's international port. The dock is now used by the Philippine Coast Guard.

Compania Maritima Building 

Compania Maritima is a picture of neglect. This is a building of significant historical value. But its current state is sad and in ruin. Several homeless people actually live here. The outside reeks of the smell of urine. Compania Maritima used to be the location of Hotel Shamrock. It used to be the headquarters of one of the country's biggest shipping companies. And it is where Shamrock traces its humble history. Shamrock is now one of today's leaders in the Cebu food industry.

Compania Maritima Building
Compania Maritima Building

Gotiaoco Building 

The Gotiaoco Building is another heritage building that was poorly preserved. The building was built during the time the Americans governed Cebu. Yet, the Gotiaoco Buidling was not owned or built by Americans. It was built by a Chinese businessman. Plans are in place to convert it into a museum.

Cebu City Hall 

The old city hall of Cebu City is also a structure built during the American occupation. Right across it is the Magellan's Cross and the Basilica Minore del Sto. Niño. Those two are reminders of the Spanish influences in the Queen City of the South.

BPI Museum 

The Cebu branch of the Bank of the Philippine Islands was the bank's third branch in the country. It is now a national landmark and museum. The structure was built in the early 1940's.

There you have it folks! Short and easy.