travel & lifestyle blog by ruth dela cruz


Santorini, Greece Vibes in Santiago Cove Hotel | Ilocos Sur

October 24, 2022

Santiago is one of Ilocos Sur’s 32 municipalities and is just a quick 6-hour drive from Manila. Santiago Cove is dubbed as the Boracay of the Ilocos Sur with its fine sands and calm waters.

When we arrived for a weekday trip, we were welcomed with blue and white-themed colors of surrounding resorts that are reminiscent of Santorini, Greece. Sitting on over 1 kilometer stretch of Santiago Cove, we found our home at Santiago Cove Hotel.

Related Read: Greece Travel Diary

Santiago Cove Hotel Ilocos Sur

Ilocos is mostly characterized by old Spanish heritage houses, and it was a refreshing sight to see the vibe and scenery in Santiago Cove Hotel. According to Dianne Tongol-Miranda, Santiago Cove Hotel and Restaurant’s Sales and Marketing Director, the Local Government Unit wants “to set an image that we are the Santorini of the Philippines, not just the North.” The color white signifies the purity of the people of Santiago, while blue mirrors the clear waters of the cove.

The hotel houses 50 rooms comprising of Deluxe Rooms at 25 sqm, Premium Deluxe at 28 sqm, Junior Suite at 30 sqm, and Family Suite at 36 sqm, which are designed in minimalist aesthetics, with accents of blue.

Each room is well-equipped with what you would expect from an establishment in the city – a flat-screen TV, a dresser that doubles as a working area, air conditioning, and most importantly, a strong WIFI connection – a must for nomads who need to stay connected in this newly discovered paradise. True enough, some of our friends needed to stay connected online and were able to work during our 3-day staycation.

Santiago Cove Hotel also has a swimming pool, bar, and scenic view of the mountains.

I shared a room with Jacque and we love that we both have a “space” to do our own thing.

Santiago Cove Rates (with Breakfast)

Deluxe (2 persons) Php 4,300

Premium (2 Persons) Php. 6,400

Junior Suite (4 Persons) Php 8,100

Family Suite (4 Persons) Php 9,100

Where to Eat in Santiago Cove | Flavors of Santiago

When you visit Santiago Cove, prepare yourself for an innovative, exciting, and flavorful dining experience. You do not need to go far to enjoy and indulge in different cuisines and Ilocos’ very own distinct flavors and dishes.

Tiny Wave Restaurant

Tiny Wave Restaurant (indoor) restaurant serves a buffet and ala carte breakfast which feature Ilocos’ Longganisa and Daing na Bangus. Aside from the -silog favorites, you can also order Champorado, French Toast, and sandwiches. The breakfast buffet spread also varies every day – giving long-staying guests a different experience every morning. There is also an Egg Station where I always have my “omelet with everything and extra cheese” and a Coffee Station for my morning cup of Americano.

The Tiny Wave Outdoor Pool Restaurant serves Asian fare, including Korean and Japanese unlimited grilling. It is made more special by its abundant fresh seafood options such as locally-sourced tuna, dorado, clams, mussels, and shrimp. Some of the must-try dishes that you should order, Korean Fried Chicken, Chili Shrimp, Asian Salmon Fillet, Grilled Lemongrass Pork Chop, Braised Beef Shank, Asian Pork Spring Roll, Gojuchang Chicken Wings, Salt and Pepper Pork Riblets, Crispy Calamari, Nori Cheese Sticks, and Pork Sisig.

Rodrigo’s Roast + Resto and Bar

Rodrigo’s Roast + Resto and Bar is an all-day dining restaurant specializing in authentic Filipino-Ilocano dishes using only the freshest, sustainably-sourced ingredients. I love the ambiance of Rodrigo’s with the romantic seaside setting. In the afternoon, you may even catch a live acoustic band performance, or you may choose to stay by the seaside and just enjoy the view while having Filipino dessert, Halo-halo. Make sure that you order Ilocos Empanada and Lechon Roast when you visit!

For our lunch, we enjoyed All-Filipino dishes that includes Sinigang na Malaga, Pinapaitan, Ensaladang gulay Crispy Bagis, Calamares Hipon ala Rodrigo, Ilocano Set with Malunggay Rice, Tinuno Set with Java Rice Seafood set with Plain Rice, Lechon Manok and Lechon Baboy.

Although I do not normally drink at lunchtime, I enjoyed a glass of white wine with the ladies. Santiago Cove Hotel carries different wine and alcohol selections that the guests may order per glass or bottle..

Rubra Bar | Dinner and Wine

For couples or friends who want to enjoy a romantic night, Santiago Cove Hotel also serves exquisite dishes through its Rubra Bar (located on the rooftop deck of the new hotel annex). We were able to sample a special dinner prepared for us by Chef Chester Delos Reyes – Velas, the property’s Chef Consultant and the brain behind the brilliant menu of the property’s two main dining outlets and home-grown burger joint.

We were not actually prepared for a luxe evening, and it was a “come as you are” dinner. A different dining experience that allowed us to just relax and be ourselves – the phasing is perfect for us to enjoy conversations between each course. The rooftop bar is unintimidating, and the open kitchen gave us a peek at what to expect from the innovative dishes. From the freshest ingredients to the well-thought-out plating and presentation, I love everything that they served us. I didn’t expect to feel so full after dessert. Thank you Chef Chester and team!

Check out our posts #SantiagoCoveHotel

In my next blogs, I would share stories about our Side Trip to Vigan and Things to Do in Santiago Cove.

Our 3-day stay in Santiago Cove is just perfect to enjoy its sights and flavors. I enjoy the balance of exploration/adventure and relaxation. I love how the hotel staff is always prompt in listening to guests’ requests and inquiries. I had little misadventures and personal requests during our stay (my bag/phones got swept by waves, and I had to attend morning worship services), in which the staff pleasantly accommodated my requests. This type of service made me feel secure and at home – knowing that I can get assistance when I need them.

Follow me @ruthilicious for more stories.

Ilocanos are known to be nurturing and comforting, and these qualities are reflected with how the Santiago Cove staff serve their guests.

For inquiries and bookings, call Santiago Cove Hotel at +63 917 654 2078 or email them at [email protected]. For updates, follow them at @santiagocovehotel on Facebook and Instagram.

Santiago Cove Hotel is located in Sabangan Beach, Santiago, Philippines.

    1. Good thing din kc tlgang npaka accomadating nila , mababait na staff na tlga nmang tutulungan ka ,whenever na may gstu ka or may kailangan ka , as u said Ms.Ruth 😊🥰
      Kayq tlgang bbalik balikan mu itong hotel ❤️

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