A wide porch stretched the length of the building, and above it were two balconies with black wrought iron banisters that curved out gracefully.
There were balconies along the far side of the building that hadn't been destroyed.
Many of the houses, which are of stone throughout, with flat roofs, are large and luxuriously built; wooden-covered balconies project from the windows and give a peculiar aspect to the streets.
The public buildings include the cathedral (1760), the government palace, the municipal palace, the episcopal palace, the church of Santa Ana, a national theatre, a school of arts and trades, a foreign hospital, the former administration building of the Canal Company, Santo Tomas Hospital, the pesthouse of Punta Mala and various asylums. The houses are mostly of stone, with red tile roofs, two or three storeys high, built in the Spanish style around central patios, or courts, and with balconies projecting far over the narrow streets; in such houses the lowest floor is often rented to a poorer family.
Above this comes a row of circular shields, adorned with intricate arabesques, while bands and wreaths of lilies are everywhere scupltured on the windows, balconies, tambours and cornices, adding lightness to the fabric. The whole is raised on a platform 7 ft.
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