939. (Arguably) Curaçao’s Most Famous Building

The iconic 300+ year old Penha House is the anchor of the famous Handelskade (Curaçao’s waterfront), it’s also the first dated example of the former merchant’s houses built during the prosperous days of the 18th Century. The house was built for a Dutch governor’s widow, the mother-in-law of the governor then in office. The Governor’s palace is conveniently located across the street (I don’t know bout you, I wouldn’t want my mother-in-law as a neighbor… granted in this case, her house is nice enough, she might never want to leave…)

In 1837, J.L. Penha & Sons bought the building and made various modifications. The bottom floor was used by J.L. Penha for his store, which is still open today and is run by his great-grandchildren.

Penha stores are among the top cosmetic, perfume, cologne and apparel stores in the Caribbean… and this Awesome building beckons cruise tourists like no other!

About 1000awesomethingsaboutcuracao

I'm Carolina Gomes-Casseres, the creator of 1000 Awesome Things About Curaçao. I live in Manhattan but sometimes miss my first awesome island. Thanks for visiting!


  1. Raul M

    Nice article, nice photo and nice building!!! 😉

  2. Pingback: 840. Confessions of a Curaçao Street Artist | 1000 Awesome Things About Curaçao

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: