The Virgin of El Panecillo



Acclaim Lighting Partners with Salotec Luminoplastia to Illuminate the Notable Attraction 

At 3,000 meters above sea level, The Virgin El Panecillo is located at the top of El Panecillo in Quito, Ecuado. The beautiful statue is ranked among the highest in the world and has become one of the main tourist attractions, providing a 180 degree view of the city. 

The 45-meter-tall statue made from 7,400 aluminum pieces depicts the Virgin Mary as described in the biblical Book of Revelation. It is one of the only depictions of the Virgin-Mother with wings like an angel. The statue stands on top of a globe and beholds other iconographic features, including Her crown of twelve stars and a snake under Her foot, representing the triumph of the church over sin. 

The Virgin rests on a four level building made from concrete and clad volcanic rock. Visitors can tour a small museum inside the building, which highlights the history of the ancient hill and construction of the sculpture is shared. Assembly of the statue began in 1974 in Madrid before being shipped to Ecuador. The sculpture was finally finished a year later in March of 1975. 

Illuminating the Virgin of El Panecillo 

Because the statue plays such a notable role in the city’s tourist economy, Salotec Luminoplastia, a local Ecuador architectural lighting company, was challenged with replacing the current lighting scheme by designing and installing a dynamic lighting system to highlight the grand statue at night. With the complex exterior including windows and columns, the company needed to create an all-encompassing lighting system that is calendar control-driven. 

To find the lighting products versatile enough to illuminate the statue, Monica Velasco and Miguel Salmon, Salotec Luminoplastia designers, investigated several lighting companies. The team reviewed numerous products that could provide color changing capabilities, precise colors and the ability for control-driven lighting to provide intricate lighting schemes for special occasions. 

Salotec Luminoplastia specified products from Los Angeles-based Acclaim Lighting. The products chosen have capabilities that effectively illuminate the different exterior layers. The assembly of lighting products took just one month beginning in October 2016. 

“The result is excellent, as the great icon of the Quito city is now visible from many points in the city,” said Miguel Salomón, Salotec Luminoplastia. “This result to us as a company designer fills us with pride and gives us strength to face greater challenges in 2017.” 

The design envisioned by Salotec Luminoplastia achieved the goal of illuminating the statue at night with complete satisfaction. Each product specifically met a need. 

DynaGraze Exterior HO DMX fixtures are used to highlight the windows. The product features adjustable feet, a glare shield and DMX and RDM control systems, offering multiple configurations and very smooth linear dimming capabilities. It can be easily linked together in one chain, or can be installed using weather proof link cables. The unit includes a 30-degree swivel mount and a 90-degree swivel mount option with a beam angel of 10 degrees x 60 degrees, 30 degrees x 60 degrees or 60 degrees to fit a wide range of applications. It provides 650 lumens per foot and maintains 70 percent of its lumens at 150,000 hours.

Rebel Drum Series CC, high power, submersible RGB LED fixtures in a stainless steel housing, highlight the floor columns. The product can be mounted in any position due to its adjustable yoke and uses low voltage direct current to operate.

To light the World Lookout and Olla, the company installed Dyna Flood XT QW high-powered quad-color LED flood units which supply precisely matched colors in outdoor settings. It features an auto-switching, multi-voltage power supply and an on-board touch-sensitive menu and has a brightness of 1,579 lumens at a 20-degree beam angle, delivering efficacy of 26.3 lumens per watt. 

To illuminate the figure of the Virgin, DELTA, a high power IP65 LED wash light, was installed. Due to the fixture’s robustness, it is ideal for demanding fixed installations and was developed to replace high power discharge luminaries with compact high-efficiency fixtures. 

Designed to be the most effective control solution for architectural control, the company used The Art 500, a touch panel DMX controller with 1,024 DMX channels and 500 preset scenes, to simplify the synchronization of each product. Included is the ART 500 software package, which offers an easy to navigate interface, combined with powerful control features.


Today, the Virgin of El Panecillo lights the night with beautiful colors and schemes, coordinated for special holidays and occasions. The community and tourists can enjoy the beauty more clearly from all over the city. 



Virgin of El Panecillo Project 

Designers: Salotec Luminoplastia, Ecuador 

Lighting Provider: Acclaim Lighting, Los Angeles