The Center for Intramuros Studies of the Intramuros Administration (IA) is now the Esperanza B. Gatbonton Center for Intramuros Studies!

Established on August 16, 2021 pursuant to the policy recommendations of the Conservation Management Plan, the Center is IA’s main coordinating body for matters relevant to Intramuros Studies. It currently maintains the Registry of Intramuros Cultural and Historical Properties. It envisions itself as a leading local studies center in the Philippines. In August 2022, the Center was renamed in honor of Dr. Esperanza Gatbonton. 

Esperanza Bunag Gatbonton is a writer and researcher on Philippine culture. A prolific scholar on Intramuros studies, she wrote the following books: A Heritage of Saints (1979), Intramuros A Historical Guide (1980), Philippine Religious Carvings in Ivory (1981), and   Bastion de San Diego (1985). Together with Dr. Jaime C. Laya, she co-authored the Intramuros of Memory (1981) that was graced by an Introduction by Nick Joaquin. She provided Introductions to Venerated Virgins of Intramuros (1982) written by Carlos Manabat and Philippine Religious Imagery in Ivory (1982) with captions by Martin I. Tinio.  She was instrumental in the drafting of Presidential Decree No. 1616 (1979) and its first Implementing Rules and Regulations (1981). 

She was Consultant for Management and Direction of the Intramuros Administration from 1979-1983, overseeing directly the research and restoration of the Parian Gate Complex, Santa Lucia Gate, Bastion de San Pedro, Bastion de San José, and Fort Santiago Gate. In 1984, she was Field Director of the Archaeological Excavation of the Ayuntamiento. From 1986-89, she was Vice Chair of the Southeast Asian Ministry of Education Organization in Archaeology and the Fine Arts (SPAFA). She has taught at the University of the Philippines (Manila) and the University of Santo Tomás Graduate School. Until  2003 she was Consultant and Director for Heritage Sites at the NCCA. She also worked as the Project Manager of Escuela Taller restoration project at San Agustín Church. 

Her commitment to Philippine heritage conservation was recognized when she was awarded the PAMA-AS Gintong Bai Award for Conservation in 2005. She has a PhD in Philippine Studies from the University of the Philippines (Diliman).  She is a member of two honor societies,  Phi Kappa Phi and Pi Gamma Mu.


Contact Us

Esperanza B. Gatbonton Center for Intramuros Studies
Intramuros Administration
5/F Palacio del Gobernador
General Luna Street cor. A. Soriano Avenue
Intramuros 1002

Email: [email protected]