Juan Nakpil
Personal details
Juan Felipe Nakpil y de Jesús

(1899-05-26)May 26, 1899[1]
Quiapo, Manila
Captaincy General of the Philippines
DiedMay 7, 1986(1986-05-07) (aged 86)
Manila, Philippines
Spouse(s)Anita Agoncillo Noble
Parent(s)Julio Nakpil (father)
Gregoria de Jesús (mother)
Alma materUniversity of the Philippines
University of Kansas
Fontainebleau School of Fine Arts
Order of National Artists of the Philippines
ReligionRoman Catholicism
Military service
Allegiance Philippines
Philippine Army
Komandante (Major)

Juan Felipe de Jesús Nakpil, KGCR (born Juan Felipe Nakpil y de Jesús; May 26, 1899 – May 7, 1986) known as Juan Nakpil, was a Filipino architect, teacher and a community leader. In 1973, he was named one of the National Artists for architecture.[2] He was regarded as the Dean of Filipino Architects.

Early life

He was the eighth child of the Philippine Revolution veterans Julio Nakpil and Gregoria de Jesús (who married the former after the death of her first husband Andrés Bonifacio).[3]


He studied engineering at the University of California and later, at the University of Kansas, where he received his bachelor's degree in Mechanical Engineering. He then studied architecture at the Fontainebleau School of Fine Arts in France upon the recommendation of Jean Jacques Haffner, one of his professors at the Harvard Graduate School of Architecture.


Nakpil worked at Andres Luna de San Pedro's architectural firm (1928) and at Don Gonzalo Puyat & Sons, opening his own architectural firm in 1930.[4] Among Nakpil's works are San Carlos Seminary, Geronimo de los Reyes Building, Iglesia ni Cristo Riverside Locale (Now F. Manalo, San Juan), Magsaysay Building, Rizal Theater, Capitol Theater, Captain Pepe Building, Manila Jockey Club, Rufino Building, Philippine Village Hotel, University of the Philippines Administration[5] and University Library, and the Rizal Shrine in Calamba, Laguna. He also designed the International Eucharistic Congress altar and improved the Quiapo Church in 1930 by erecting a dome and a second belfry. The church burned down in 1929 prior to Nakpil's redesign of the building.[6] In the 1930s to the 1940s, Nakpil and his fellow architects Andres Luna de San Pedro, Fernando Ocampo and Pablo Antonio started the period of modern architecture in the Philippines.[7] Nakpil and others also established the Philippine College of Design in 1941 but the institution did not survive the Second World War.[8] In 1952, President Quirino appointed Nakpil to be a member of the National Rizal Day Committee. He was hailed as a National Artist for Architecture in 1973.[9]

On November 23, 1936, Nakpil was on a list of Inactive Philippine Army Officers as an Infantry Major.[10]



University of the Philippines, Administration Building or "Quezon Hall"
University of the Philippines, Administration Building or "Quezon Hall"

Other buildings

Special Projects

Personal life

Nakpil married Anita Agoncillo Noble. Noble was the granddaughter of Doña Marcela Mariño Agoncillo and became the first Miss Philippines, winning the first national beauty contest which was held at the Manila Carnival in 1926. Nakpil's daughter, Edith Nakpil, was crowned Miss Philippines in 1955.[13]


 The Philippines:


  1. ^ Mendoza, Guillermo. (1973). "Pioneer in Philippine Architecture." The National Artists of the Philippines. Pasig: Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) and Anvil Publishing. 1998.
  2. ^ Art: Perception & Appreciation. Goodwill Trading Co., Inc. p. 301. ISBN 9789711109332. Retrieved 30 January 2019.
  3. ^ Antoja, M. (1998). My Country and My People 4. Rex Bookstore, Inc. p. 232. ISBN 9789712322532. Retrieved 29 August 2018.
  4. ^ Mendoza, G. (1973)
  5. ^ Klassen, Winand W. (1986). Architecture in the Philippines: Filipino Building in a Cross-cultural Context. University of San Carlos. p. 188. ISBN 9789711000493. Retrieved 29 August 2018.
  6. ^ Zialcita, Fernando Nakpil (2006). Quiapo: Heart of Manila. Cultural Heritage Studies Program, Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Ateneo de Manila University. p. 156. ISBN 9789719367307. Retrieved 30 January 2019.
  7. ^ Salvan, George Salinda (2000). Architectural & Const. Data. Goodwill Trading Co., Inc. p. 230. ISBN 9789711110420. Retrieved 30 January 2019.
  8. ^ Contemporary Philippine Culture: Selected Papers in Arts and Education. Japan Foundation, Manila Office. 1998. p. 65. Retrieved 30 January 2019.
  9. ^ "The National Artists of the Philippines: Juan F. Napkil". National Commission for Culture and the Arts. Archived from the original on 26 July 2014. Retrieved 19 March 2012.
  10. ^ Cornejo, Miguel R. (1939). Cornejo's Commonwealth Directory of the Philippines. Manila: Miguel R. Cornejo, A.B., LL.B. p. 849.
  11. ^ de Jesus, Max (2008). 2008 Sapphire Anniversary Issue. 11th World Jamboree Menorial Foundation Inc. pp. 20–24.
  12. ^ Verceles, Pedro (December 1957). "The Second National Eucharistic Congress of the Philippines: a Historical Record". Philippine Studies. Ateneo de Manila University. 5: 456–482 – via JSTOR.
  13. ^ Silvestre, Edmund (December 19, 2018). "Welcome to Miss Philippines Street". PhilStar Global.
  14. ^ "Our Story". Knights of Rizal.
  15. ^ Ofilada, Macario (October 1959). "The Knights of Rizal" (PDF). The Cabletow. II: 73.