Sunday, 5 August 2012

Perez-Samanillo Building (First-United Building)

By: Paolo Bustamante

Do you want to see some red and white allover? The First-United Building reminds us of stains of the past! (Im talking about WWII here haha). The First-United Building is one of the most iconic buildings in Escolta. When my friend and i visited the First-United Building it was an adventure like no other. We were like criminals, crooks that got out of jail, we were con artists in the making. I was really desperate to go inside! I just want to see if it is nice. So, we went inside and the guards asked us where we are going, so I told my friend Deric, "Girl, hold my Gucci, I'll handle this". I told the guard that we will just visit and exhibit, (which is true by the way! I was invited by Con Cabrera to visit the 98B Exhibit). When we went to the exhibit but no one was around, then we got bored, so we explored the building, we noticed that the guards were looking for us so we ran up and down and we took the elevator going to the roof deck and we saw the beauty of Sta. Cruz. We saw the Monte de Piedad building, the Sta. Cruz Church and the Roman Santos Building. Too bad when I was about to go all sentimental, the guards were there to escort us outside.

The First United Building, formerly known as the the Perez-Samanillo Building was built in 1928 by Andres Luna de San Pedro, Juan Luna and Paz Pardo de Yavera's son. It is one of the few art deco buildings that survived during the war. It is now owned by the Sylianteng Family they bought it during the 60's. Added information about this building, the security guard told us that the late King of Comedy, Dolphy had an agency here in this building.

Weeks before publishing this post, I asked you guys if you know the history of this building and quite surprisingly many have responded and all of those who responded were right! Thank you for your help! 


  1. A very interesting blog you have. I was just wondering if you know of this unknown old mosque I saw on my way to makati near cash and carry. It fawn only be spotted from a vantage point and looking for it,seemed a puzzle and could not find the access even asking the local tricycle boys. They know it's an old mosque but beyond that, didn't know much more about it which makes it quite intriquing and shall research about it. If you would be interested to check it out, you can view the tower/minaret from dayap street a short walk west of cash and carry, situated in a concealed interior lot with no visible access between matanzas and ibarra. I belieive it hasn't been documented much.

  2. This is history seen thru youthful eyes. Wish more people of your age would be as interested as you are in heritage sites that have contributed much to a colorful Filipino culture.

    Keep these features coming!