Chilling in Sta. Ana

Yeah.  It’s a long ways just to chill I know.  But A and our good friends convinced me to go all the way to Cagayan Valley so that I can spend some down time with them away from the hustle and bustle of my town that is Manila.

But what really convinced me was the surprise birthday party planned for our dear friend J.  And so I obliged and found myself on a bus one August evening en route to Tuguegarao.  A 10-hour bus ride had me arriving at 7am the following morning.   After breakfast and a bit of a rest, I was soon off again with the gang on 3-hour drive to Sta. Ana.

Not knowing what to expect, I was pleasantly surprised when we reached the unpretentious entrance that lead to a simple structure,

that is the resort’s reception lobby.   Located at the northeastern tip of Luzon, in a 7-hectare waterfront of Cagayan Valley facing the South China Sea,

Cagayan Holiday & Leisure Resort provides

112 spacious villas,

a seashore swimming pool,

a Spa and Holistic center and a fine dining Chinese Restaurant.

Our ocean front villa came with a private pool where we of course spent most of our time chilling.

Each of the 17 ocean front villas has 5 bedrooms with its own bath and albeit not to my taste is fully furnished and in fairness, tastefully designed.  The kitchenette does not really allow for real cooking but we had a feast just the same.

We bought most of our food from the local market and for a fee, asked a restaurant — JnJ Seafood Restaurant along the highway — to cook for us.  We had a feast.  A seaside town, Sta Ana is known for sweet, inexpensive crabs and lobsters, which suffice to say, was the highlight of our stay.

News of disgruntled residents somewhat taints this Chinese owned resort in the Cagayan Special Economic Zone and Freeport (CSEZF) area — they are accused of employing many Chinese citizens offering less opportunities to the locals.  There were undeniably Chinese-speaking employees working alongside Filipino employees during our visit, perhaps to cater to the mostly Chinese tourists billeted at the resort.  This town was once only known for game fishing without much facility, it is today attracting tourists from Hong Kong and China, mostly gamblers. The resort complex is really known for its casino but if gambling is not your thing, there is the spa and some watersports facilities such as jetskis and kayaks that can be rented.

The beach however does not boast of the same esteemed white sand of many Philippine beaches.

The sunset though managed to get my seal of approval.   🙂

If you are in the area and only if you are, I’d recommend that you check them out.


11 thoughts on “Chilling in Sta. Ana

  1. that getaway seemed to be at the end of the world, but all villas have 5 br each? that’s a family package right there, or a boisterous group of friends.

    hope next time you’d include the pricing for the stay so we could get an idea.

    i have a friend in tuguegarao so this is worth keeping in mind.


    1. Our villa was P17,500 a night. The more people the merrier and less costly. Because the whole villa is air-conditioned, the livingroom area (especially the one on the 2nd floor can be used as another bedroom). It is best for big groups.


    2. We plan to visit Cagayan this summer and as i see it, this is the best place for us. We are a big family and we will have a reunion. Since you have been there and stayed, may I ask how many persons can really accomodate this villa with 5 bdrooms plus as you mentioned, 2nd flor can be another room.



    3. Hi Maripaz, the rooms can fit 2 people each, the 2nd floor has 2 large sofas, which in my opinion can be used to sleep on too. The air conditioning, if I remember correctly is centralized.


  2. You make a strong case to visit this beautiful location. I enjoyed your description and will certainly look them up if I am every in this area. Thanks for sharing.


  3. its so nice but you mis one place in sun city the ktv lounge. its a nice place..try to visit again….


  4. We are interested in visiting the place. I would like to ask if there is a maximum person allowed in a 1 villa? since we are really big family and we plan to have a reunion.


    1. Hi Patricia,

      As this was written in 2010, I cannot vouch for the accuracy of its content now. I likewise do not know or recall if there is a maximum capacity in each villa. There are several types of villa and we got the 5 rooms. It can definitely sleep more than 10 as the 2nd floor has a big space, the sofa wide enough to sleep as well. You may visit their FB page and inquire. Here’s the link:

      Thanks for visiting. 🙂


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