Fodor's Expert Review Iglesia de la Compañía
Representative of 17th-century religious architecture, the complex was built by the Jesuits in 1573 and its series of bone-white buildings incorporate many decorative styles and touches—the detail carved into the sillar arcades is spectacular. The side portal, built in 1654, and main facade, built in 1698, show examples of Andean mestizo style, with carved flowers, spirals, birds—and angels with Indian faces—along gently curving archways and spiral pillars. Inside, Capilla St. Ignatius (St. Ignatius Chapel) has a polychrome cupola and 66 canvases from the Cusco School, including original 17th-century oil paintings by Bernardo Bitti. Hike up to the steeple at sunset for sweeping views of Arequipa. The former monastery houses some of the most upscale stores in the city and contains two cloisters, which can be entered from General Morán or Palacio Viejo. The main building is on the southeast corner of the Plaza de Armas.