The Savings Museum was founded in 1990 with the aim of preserving species that belonged to the different institutions that gave rise to Banco Estado, which are an important part of our country’s heritage. In its dependencies, collections linked to the different financial institutions that preceded the current bank are exhibited, such as the Caja de Crédito Hipotecario, Caja Nacional de Ahorros, Caja de Crédito Agrario and Instituto de Crédito Industrial – some of which date back to the 19th century. In 1953 these savings banks merged to give rise to the Banco del Estado de Chile.
Until December 2006, the Savings Museum operated in the basement of the Bandera building No. 60–66 and, on the occasion of Chile’s Bicentennial celebration, it was moved to the BancoEstado Headquarters building. Its sample is made up of documents, paintings, furniture, clocks, objects, engravings and various work elements, typical of banking activities, which were part of different offices and dependencies; and that currently constitute a unique sample of its kind.
The BancoEstado Headquarters is one of the most recognizable buildings in the Civic District of Santiago. Located on Avenida Alameda Bernardo O’Higgins, between Morandé and Bandera streets, it was designed by the architect Héctor Mardones Restat, winner of the 1973 National Architecture Prize and winner of the preliminary design competition held in 1945 for the construction of the Caja de Amortización de the Public Debt, whose dependencies are today occupied by the Metropolitan Regional Government and the National Savings Bank. The Mardones work was inaugurated in 1953, becoming the largest building in Latin America, with 72 thousand square meters. It is also an important part of the Civic District, a sector declared a Typical Zone by the National Monuments Council in 2008 and which had been in the making since the late 1930s with the proposals of the Austrian architect Karl Brunner and the approval of the Sectional Plan, the first regulatory plan of the city of Santiago, in 1937. The building also gave rise to the Antonio Varas Gallery and the Antonio Varas Theater Hall, used today by the Chilean National Theater. In addition, the armored doors of the vault, like those of the safe deposit box department, were built by the Panzer factory in Hamburg, are 30 centimeters thick and made of compact steel. In 2009 the building was highlighted by urban planners and architects from the magazine “+Decoración” as one of the 10 most representative buildings of the 20th century in Santiago.
Avenida Libertador Bernardo O'Higgins, 1111, Santiago.