The Ramón Guiteras Memorial Library

Thanks to the generosity and dedication of Colegio de Belén alumnus John “Jack” Guiteras '48, the Ramón Guiteras Memorial Library was established at Belen Jesuit’s campus in Little Havana, and later in West-Miami Dade. As a public library in memory of Ramón Guiteras, it has continued to fulfill the wishes of his daughter Gertrude Elizabeth Guiteras, as well as preserve Cuban history and its culture for the South Florida community.

Students have full access to the best electronic resources available, including over 95,000 electronic books, and to the more than 60,000 titles that form part of the library’s collection, including 8,000 from the Cuban Collection. The library also has access to hundreds of videos and subscriptions to popular magazines, scholarly journals, and local and national newspapers. Books written in Spanish are available in all subjects, including fiction.


  • To support the curriculum of Belen Jesuit Preparatory School.
  • To teach students of Belen Jesuit Preparatory School about the research process.
  • To help students become independent seekers of information
  • To meet the information needs of the Belen community
  • To promote reading among the Belen community
  • To offer our patrons the latest and best information available
  • To provide the Miami community with access to our collection
  • To offer cultural and literary events for the Belen community as well as the community at large
In addition, through our unique Cuban Collection, we aim to preserve the Cuban culture and provide the Cuban and Cuban-American community with access to books written about Cuba or by Cubans and Cubans in exile.


In 1971, the State of Rhode Island’s Superior Court Judge, the Honorable Joseph R. Weisberger, ruled that establishing the Ramón Guiteras Memorial Library at Belen Jesuit would satisfy the intent of the trust, given that the library would preserve the culture and traditions of the Cuban people and be accessible to the public.

Through donations and acquisitions, the Colección Cubana has expanded over the years and today has approximately 8,000 books, some in English and others in Spanish, written about Cuba or by Cuban and Cuban-American authors. This Collection is housed in a dedicated room inside the library. The Cuban Collection is not only valuable to researchers looking for hard-to-find materials about Cuba’s culture and history, but it also allows students to find turn-of-the-century rare books and the most recently published books on specific Cuban topics. 


List of 2 members.

  • Photo of Alina Alpizar

    Mrs. Alina Alpizar 

    Library Director
    (786) 621-4092
  • Photo of Ofelia Roibas

    Sister Ofelia Roibas , R.F. 

    Library Assistant
    (786) 621-4070

Library Hours

Monday to Friday
7:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
The Information Retrieval Skills Program is taught through the library in cooperation with the different academic departments. Students are instructed in the research process using books, periodicals and online databases. Lessons for entire classes or small groups must be scheduled with the librarian in advance. In addition. individual students may come to the library throughout the day to receive instruction on information retrieval.


List of 12 items.

  • 1854

    Belen Jesuit Preparatory School began a teaching tradition synonymous with academic excellence and spiritual discipline.
  • 1925

    El Colegio de Belen, known as "The Palace of Education" was built in Marianao in Havana, Cuba.
  • 1941

    Miss Gertrude E. Guiteras provides for the establishment of a public library in the city ofMatanzas, Cuba, as a memorial to her father, Ramón Guiteras. 
  • 1955

    The library was built in Matanzas by Cuban architect Enrique Marcet "for the free use by all the people of their beloved city of Matanzas."
  • 1961

    The political regime in Cuba confiscates the property. Belen Jesuit Preparatory School opens its doors in the City of Miami.
  • 1962

    The library in Matanzas is confiscated by the communist regime of Fidel Castro. A portion of the books was transported to Russia in exchange for arms and other equipment. The building is converted into a communist social club.
  • 1971

    Upon the initiative of alumnus Jack R. Guiteras (Belen '48), it is deemed that Belen Jesuit Preparatory School, in the opinion of the Superior Court of Rhode Island, "performs the function of preserving and maintaining their (the Cuban people's) pride and knowledge of the culture of their ancestors.
  • 1981

    The present building of Belen Jesuit Preparatory School opens its doors.
  • 1990

    On May 9, 1990, the Spanish Consulate in Coral Gables donated an extensive collection of books belonging to the father of Belen Jesuit Principal, Fr. José M. Izquierdo, S.J. The library’s director at the time, Marta Alday, also began a campaign to modernize the collections, increase access to technology, and improve the library’s space allocation by redesigning the circulation and reference areas.
  • 1997

    In honor of the twenty-fifth anniversary of the Ramón Guiteras Memorial Library at Belen Jesuit, the library inaugurated the Frances F. Guiteras Computer Resource Center, named after John “Jack” Guiteras’s mother.
  • 2007

    Electronic resources were restructured, and as a result, the Ramón Guiteras Memorial Library presently offers in-house and remote online access to all the databases available through the Gale Company, including the Teaching and Educational Reference
    Center, Global Issues in Context, and the Health and Wellness Reference Center.
  • 2012

    The Ramón Guiteras Memorial Library celebrated the fortieth anniversary of its inception at Belen Jesuit, during which the school paid a special tribute to John “Jack” Guiteras ‘48. His foresight, dedicated service, and commitment to education not only followed in the historical tradition established by his ancestors, but also endowed Belen Jesuit with an important requirement for its growth as an educational institution, and enabled it to provide four decades of library educational services to its students as well as to the South Florida community at large.
500 SW 127th Avenue, Miami, FL 33184
phone: 305.223.8600 | fax: 305.227.2565 | email:
Belen Jesuit Preparatory School was founded in 1854 in Havana, Cuba by Queen Isabel II of Spain.  The task of educating students was assigned to the priests and brothers of the Society of Jesus (the Jesuits), whose teaching tradition is synonymous with academic excellence and spiritual discipline.  In 1961, the new political regime of Cuba confiscated the School property and expelled the Jesuit faculty.  The School was re-established in Miami the same year, and over the next decade, continued to grow.  Today, Belen Jesuit sits on a 30-acre site in western Dade County, only minutes away from downtown Miami.