Bahay ni Don Jose Tio Bonpua, Sr. at ang Museo ng Banal na Sining | Don Jose Tio Bonpua, Sr. House and the Museum of the Sacred Art, Inc.

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Official Name: Don Jose Tio Bonpua, Sr. House and the Museum of the Sacred Art, Inc.[1]

Classification Status: Oslob Heritage Site and Tourist Spot[1]

Town or City: Oslob

Year Declared: 2014[1]

Legislation: Resolution No. 8, s. 2014[1]

The house was “illegally sold” by the wife of Jose Tio Bonpua Jr., one of the 11 children of the older Bonpua, bypassing the other siblings who had the right of first refusal. Christian Bonpua, great-grandson of Bonpua Sr. and curator of the 1730 Jesuit House in Cebu City, stressed the need for the house to be preserved because of its architectural and historical significance. He described the house as an “architectural marvel,” evoking both Spanish and American influences.

“It is personally significant to me because it is a symbol of the hard work of a man from Fujian, China, who, having mastered the Spanish language and attended the Ateneo de Manila, became a successful copra trader in the humble town of Oslob. Actually, the street where the house is located was named after his patron saint, San José,” he said.

The younger Bonpua also said the heritage house, also called Villa del Mar because of its nearness to the sea, hosted Presidents Ramon Magsaysay, Carlos P. Garcia, and Diosdado Macapagal as well as other dignitaries such as Vice President Emmanuel Pelaez, Senate President Mariano Jesus Cuenco, and Sen. Sergio “Serging” Osmeña Jr., in its 98-year existence.

Gingerbread ornamentation
Art historian Fr. Rene Javellana, SJ, of Ateneo de Manila University, described the house as of the eclectic style.

“Its arcaded lower story quotes from the shophouses of turn-of-the-century Colon Street in Cebu City,” he said, explaining that “in these houses, the lower floor was set aside for a store while the owners lived on the second floor.

“Over the first floor an elevated overhang of the second floor allowed free passage of pedestrians even during inclement weather or on hot summer days. Some houses did not have a second-floor extension over the arcade but had a roofed corridor instead.”

Javellana said the house had a delicate wood tracery on the central portion of the façade, which allowed air to circulate.

“Overall, the intricate woodwork, reminiscent of embroidered calado, also invokes the gingerbread style associated with Victorian architecture,” he said.

“Victorian gingerbread ornamentation was quite popular toward the end of the 19th century and the early 20th in the Visayas. British traders established trading houses in Iloilo and Cebu, lured by agricultural products, chiefly sugar and abaca, which were exported to Europe,” he added.–CONTRIBUTED

Text from Lifestyle.Inq

Title: Oslob’s ‘Villa del Mar’ demolished sans permit
URL: See below (Source: 2.)
Publication Date: JUNE 12, 2017
Access Date: September 22, 2023

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