Tourist vs. Everyday

appearance of reality

Baquedano crosses Manuel Bulnes and forms the east side of Arturo Prat plaza. It is a long avenue in the old quarter of Iquique, a popular tourist attraction and is a “typical zone,” a status that preserves its historical and architectural heritage. It is characterized by late 19th- and early 20th-century wooden houses. Baquedano Street was transformed by city government into an attractive pedestrian boulevard. The architecture that Baquedano Street exemplifies accommodates Iquique’s prevailing climatic conditions.

Click any photograph for a larger view and use Ctrl-x to zoom in closer.

The buildings on Baquedano Street and, in general, all those that follow the city’s traditional architecture, were built as stores or houses by immigrants who amassed fortunes through the nitrate works. The buildings typically show a continuous facade,a verticality and lightness. They are typically organized around a central nucleus and feature vestibules, verandas, skylights or lanterns, watchtowers, and a serial or “shady” roof over the terrace roof.

Above, a mixed series of homes. At left, a rundown, one-story timber structure with a “shady” roof intended to cool the interior. The bright blue and beige, at right, are cinder block, as is the following with the front door blocked open to let in the air, a very hot tin roof. Windows and first floor porches are heavily barred or fenced for security.

Northeast corner of Manuel Bulnes and Oscar Bonilla

A common theme here and in Lima, Peru: additional living space above an existing structure thrown together of cheap materials, half done (ran out of funds), no insulation.

Views of the city open up as we climb the escarpment to the desert plateau. In the foreground a tenement, cinder block homes, glittering skyscrapers with ocean views in the distance.

Click me for the first post of this series.


Wikipedia – “Baquedano Street“,

Copyright 2020 Michael Stephen Wills All Rights Reserved

6 thoughts on “Tourist vs. Everyday

  1. Michael,
    It is interesting to see how many different ways houses are built in the world.
    Every continent, every country, every region has very specific ideas and requirements as to how people want to live. It often depends on the weather, the building materials and the history.
    Greetings from the beautiful Rhine-Highlands / Germany
    🙂 Rosie 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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