Iloilo City Cultural Heritage: Doña Pacita Lopez Building

Doña Pacita Building was built-in 1933. Nereo Cajilig Luján has shared on Facebook that it was named after the former Pacita de Santos Moreno (1908-1996), wife of industrialist Don Eugenio Lopez.

It is located at the corner of Mapa and Rizal Streets in Iloilo City, and it became the College of Engineering and Architecture of the Iloilo City Colleges (ICC) in the 1950s.

ICC, established in 1947 on Rizal Street by then Iloilo City Mayor Fernando Lopez, became the University of Iloilo on 17 December 1968.

Doña Pacita Building
Photo by: Nereo Cajilig Luján

The Lopezes owned several properties along Rizal, Mapa, and Ortiz Streets where some of their commercial buildings were built even before World War II.

One of these buildings, now the Sarrosa-Padernal Building at the corner of Ortiz and Rizal streets, housed El Tiempo, the newspaper founded by Don Eugenio.

Over the years, UI grew not only in structures and facilities but also in its curricular offerings, earning accreditation from reputable academic organizations.

In 2008, the Philippine Investment Management (PHINMA) acquired UI, officially becoming part of the PHINMA Education Network (PEN) in April 2009.

Its sister schools are the Araullo University in Cabanatuan City, the Cagayan de Oro College in Cagayan de Oro City, and the University of Pangasinan in Dagupan City.

Years later, the Cebu-based 3L Properties and Alpha Development Corp. bought the Doña Pacita Building from PHINMA and had it rehabilitated.

On 24 January 2018, the firm will open the edifice as the Goldberry Lite Hotel, its second after the Goldberry Suites in Mactan.

Dona Pacita Lopez Building
Photo by: Sheila Mae Gomez

Iloilo City Heritage Incentive Program

In a post by Florence King Haro Erlano, one of the businesses that have obtained the Iloilo City Heritage Incentive Program is the Gold Berry Lite Hotel which is originally the Doña Pacita Lopez building.

Iloilo City has an incentive program for prospective investors in heritage properties within or outside the heritage zones and in properties identified by the Iloilo City Cultural Heritage Conservation Council. The incentives are outlined in Regulation Ordinance 2013-329 or the 2013 Tourism Code.

The incentive program encourages the private sector to invest in heritage conservation and preservation. One of the businesses that have obtained such an incentive is the Gold Berry Lite Hotel which is originally the Doña Pacita Lopez building.

Read also: List of Iloilo City Cultural Heritage Sites


Sheila is a digital marketing enthusiast. She is a kdrama fan, a dog person and a certified foodie!

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