Posted 27 May, 2014 by MCD in Heritage

National Palace of Culture

Palacio Nacional de Noche

National Palace of Night

Address: 6ta Avenue & 6th Street, area 1

About the Building

the National Palace of the Republic of Guatemala, now called "National Palace of Culture", is identified as the symbol of the city of Guatemala and the country in his monumental architectural context.

After more than sixty years since its inauguration, the house seems to show signs of the evils that result with the passing of the years, fatigue and aging, combined with the results of changes to its organization and facilities due to their administrative role.

For the detection of such ailments, it has become necessary to make the diagnosis of the state of conservation, making an examination of the body built, which has determined the extent of its deterioration and make recommendations thereon, preliminary, in charge of the General Administration of the National Palace of Culture.

This operation is the detection of the problems facing the building in its most representative architectural body parts, with a general overview that provides the overview of the situation, and whether decision-making tool for the fate of the conservation and restoration interventions.

Following the diagnosis is present shall produce a written and graphic document, called: "Conservation and Restoration Project" which will regulate the characteristics, priority and type of interventions that recovery warrants monument to a programmed time period between immediate and medium term.

The Office of Conservation and Restoration of the National Palace of Culture, has planned and prepared the necessary projects, which conceived, considering that this is Heritage Monument, Cultural and Artistic, No Agreement as. 880 Date 07 November 1980 Ministry of Education representing the Executive Branch.

Historical Data

Since the early Spanish regime, was imminent need for a branch of government, of this sort in 1528 the first Government House was built in Santiago de Guatemala, ordered its construction by Jorge Alvarado in the Valley Almolonga.

In 1549 President Alonso López de Cerrato moved the seat of the Audiencia of the Confines, Thank God from Nicaragua to Santiago de Guatemala, located in the Valley of Panchoy.

In 1761 President Alonso Fernández de Heredia, began construction of a new headquarters, under the direction of Captain and Engineer Spanish, Luis Diez Navarro.

In 1919 President Manuel Estrada Cabrera, to mark the first anniversary of the Declaration of Independence, He laid the foundation stone of the Palace on one side of the Plaza de la Constitucion, responsible for the design was the Italian architect Guido Albani, but this project was unsuccessful, the fall of the government.

In 1921, President Carlos Herrera, having very few resources and the Centennial of Independence as close, built in the period of three months the Palacio del Centenario, It is popularly known as the Cardboard Palace, which was consumed by flames in 1925.

During the government of Lázaro Chacón, in 1927, Drawing a contest opened to the proposed National Palace, competition which was won by Master Agustín Iriarte, but not performed.

In 1932, General Jorge Ubico kicks, publish the basis for the design and construction of the Palace, and 4 July 1937 he was laying the foundation stone; construction was carried out between January 1939 and 10 November 1943, date on which it was opened.

The building is designed symmetrically from a central body, which emerge two side, each of these three levels and a central courtyard. Included within the project, restoration of all areas (major and minor) and reactivation of underutilized areas (basements and roof); also, restoration of the following areas is contemplated: Outside (facades and gardens), waterproofing of terrace 4th level, electrical installations (lamps), ornaments (concrete, ceramics, Pools, metal y yesería), painting (murals, heavens and plasters), metals (gates, barandales, Locksmith), wood (doors, homes, socles), Watches, upholstery and windows, in order to support recovery of useful areas of the National Palace of Culture and thus promote the projects of cultural revival.

Dimensions of the National Palace

Area of ​​work: 8,890 square meter

Rectangular: 127 meters X 70 Meters

Height. 30 meters

The building is designed symmetrically from a central body, which emerge two side, each of these three levels and a central courtyard.

In addition, every body has two rectangular ponds Mudejar, tiles and fountains. The set includes a basement and a terrace on the fourth level. In the corners has four towers and center in the north and south side, has two gables.

aniversario-palacio-nacional09260-625x415The axis of symmetry of the assembly is seated on the following elements: the central passage, which crosses the building from north to south; by stairwells, leading them first to the second level in each body side and the majestic central staircase, that takes visitors from second to third level.

The courtyards are surrounded by a series of ornate arches, some with motifs inspired by the architecture of La Antigua Guatemala, especially in the first level, pilasters which presents balustered serlianas.

Riders of the second level, have similar arcs to the first. At the third level the roof is supported by four columns that are repeated in groups of two and. These columns have two ornamental pedestals with patterns in relief. Both patios have two big shots, at the northern end there is a relief coat of Santiago de Guatemala and the south gets this shield of the Republic of Guatemala. Spherical highlights some decorative elements on the ledge of the courtyards, enamelled in blue and yellow.

Implementation of Architectural Design

Responsible for design:

  • Ing. Rafael Pérez de León
  • Ing. Enrique Riera
  • Ing. Luis Angel Rhodes

Address of the work:

  • Arturo Bickford


  • Luis E. Ponce
  • Valerio Rocco

Chief Caporales

  • Víctor Muralles

Mural Paintings

  • Alfredo Galvez Suarez


  • Carlos Rigalt Anguiano
  • Rodolfo Galeotti Torres


  • Julio Vásquez Urruela

Flooring and Tiles

  • Flooring The Eagle and Star Flats


  • Talleres Mini y Minondo & Lace

Hardware and plumbing

  • Workshops Ramirez
Services provided by the National Palace

Photo Gallery of some details of the National Palace of Guatemala


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