San Diego Convent
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The church and convent of San Diego are located at 117 Calicuchima Street and Farfan in the extraordinary downtown of Quito.

 

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These extraordinary buildings are residence of several pieces of Quito’s cultural history and are vital for the city religious memory.

 

Fray Bartolome Rubio, a religion strict Franciscan, delivered in body and soul to contemplative life, was the founder of the order of San Diego de Acala discalced priest.  In 1593, he spoke with Don Marcos de la Plaza, a religious settler, in demand for a small lot on the slopes of Pichincha, west of Quito, a place that in colonial times was called Miraflores. The tenant agreed to the request and that was how on June 25th, 1599 was founded the convent of San Diego. Years later the same settler donated another part of their land to expand the building.


The church was completed in 1603 and the convent in 1625.

 

On August 16th, 1868 a violent earthquake struck Ibarra, brought ruin upon the city. This earthquake affected the city of Quito, primarily the convent of San Diego. The reconstruction took advantage of the sale of land belonging to the ruins of the convent in Otavalo and with the management did by Fray Francisco Campos; the President of the Republic, the reconstruction was successful.

 

Incoming the convent we see a stone-brick ashlar square with quadrangular shape; and a large stone cross that lies in its center.

 

Also there is a large eucalyptus forest that formerly was capulies, myrtle and cedar. The convent has great works of eighteenth-century Escuela Quiteña, Quito Art School, including six valuable paintings of Gorivar. Four of them represent San Francisco with the Child Jesus in his arms; the others represent Blessed Mariana de Jesus; Santa Rosa de Lima, and the last one is of Santa Rosa de Viterbo.


You can admire the bigger painting of all, which represents the Loneliness, but the most outstanding work is the one of St. Thomas Aquinas, by Gorivar.

 

In the church there are paintings related of saints and different situations. Most notably canvas is San Francisco de Asis by Andrés Sánchez and "Misa Gregoriana” by Miguel de Santiago. In addition to “Nuestra Señora de Chiquinquirá”, Our Lady of Chiquinquirá, Colombian origin, the image of “La passion del Señor”, the Passion of the Lord, by Francis Alban and the picture of Christ dying, anonymous authorship.

 

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The Church of San Diego is located in the street Calicuchima and Farfan, south-west of the historic downtown of Quito.

 

The Church, Convent and Museum are located opposite to the famous cemetery of San Diego, the oldest and most beautiful of Quito.

 

Office hours are Monday to Saturday from 09h00 to 13h30, 14h30 to 17h00. The entrance fee is $ 2 USD.

 

Due to the remoteness of the site, for your safety, we recommend that you go accompanied, or with a tourist guide. Ask to your travel agency or tour operator of choice.

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