La Basílica Colegiata de Nuestra Señora de Guanajuato is the most notable building in the Plaza de la Paz. It became the parish church of Guanajuato in 1975, when it was raised to the category of Basilica of Our Lady of Guanajuato. Construction on the church, which was financed by the city’s mine owners, began in 1771 and was concluded in 1796. The same year saw the arrival at the church of the statue of the Virgin of Guanajuato, which, according to tradition, was donated by King Philip the Second. The magnificently carved wooden effigy standing on a rich silver base is noted for the sweetly beautiful faces of the Virgin and Child.
The church architecture is an example of seventeenth-century Baroque Mannerism, with a slim cupula in the same style. Its atrium dates to the beginning of the nineteenth century. Each of its three entrances has a façade of pink sandstone. The main doorway sits under a triple bell tower built at the same time and in the same style. In addition to the clock tower, there is another, shorter, tower in the Churrigueresque style of the eighteenth century.
On the main altar are the remains of Saint Faustina Martyr, along with a beautiful vessel containing her powdered blood, which were brought from Rome by the second Count of Valenciana.
The Basilica de Nuestra Señora de Guanajuato is a symbol of the splendor and the greatness of the mineral wealth of Santa Fe de Guanajuato.