Antiguo Colegio Jesuita

In 1732, the Jesuit order commenced a number of grand and varied projects in Guanajuato. The first of these was the Hospice of the Holy Trinity and, following this, on the site next door, the Jesuit church, which would become one of the architectural jewels of Viceregal Guanajuato.

With the support of its benefactors, the hospice also grew in importance. Soon, it became home to the first school for the children of the mineworkers and by 1744, it had already been granted the official title of College – the first and by far the most important in the region.

The decree in 1767 by King Charles III of Spain ordering the expulsion of the Jesuits from all Spanish territories, halted both the teaching and the construction of the new building begun on the same site only a few years previously. Each building, all in the same Churrigueresque style as the church, was limited to a single floor.

Towards the end of the eighteenth century, the buildings became home to the Royal College of the Immaculate Conception, which, with Mexican independence in 1828 was renamed the State College, the direct forerunner of the celebrated University of Guanajuato. For a time home to the School of Industrial Relations, the building now plays host to the University’s cultural activities, lending its spaces as auditoriums and art galleries. Its interior is notable for the spacious courtyard flanked by an arcade and an impressive staircase leading to the main university building built in the twentieth century.