Santa Mesa
District of Manila
Aerial view of Santa Mesa
Aerial view of Santa Mesa
Location of Santa Mesa
RegionNational Capital Region
Congressional District6th District
 • Total110,073
Time zoneUTC+08:00 (Philippine Standard Time)

Santa Mesa is a district in Manila, Philippines. It is surrounded by Pasig River on the southwestern side, and by the San Juan River on its southern and eastern side. Land borders include the districts of San Miguel to the west and Sampaloc to the north; and to the northeast is Quezon City.

Santa Mesa was formerly a part of the Sampaloc district, from which it was partitioned and separated after it had its own parish in 1911. The parish is now known as Old Sta. Mesa (Poblacion), which extends from Victorino Mapa Street to Magsaysay Boulevard. (formerly known as Santa Mesa Boulevard and Calle Santa Mesa)[2][3]


The district's name comes from the Jesuits, who christened the area Hermandad de Santa Mesa de la Misericordia ("Brotherhood of the Holy Table of Mercy"). The local parish church had for its titular Sacred Heart of Jesus, which formed part of the phrase the "Center of the Table is the Sacred Heart which all Graces and Mercy flowed down." The Tuason family are the landlords of Santa Mesa during the Spanish colonial period offered an obra pía ("pious work"), and provided social services to the people Doña Albina Tuason also donated the Land where the Church is located even right at this modern days.

A more popular folk etymology is that the name is a corruption of the Spanish term Santa Misa ("Holy Mass").[citation needed]


Wounded soldiers during the Philippine–American War.
Wounded soldiers during the Philippine–American War.

Santa Mesa was situated in the alluvial deposits at the confluence of Pasig and San Juan Rivers. It was owned by a Jesuits religious order during the Spanish Era, and it is in this period that Santa Mesa got its name. Santa Mesa is better known for its role in the Philippine–American War, in which the area became a battlefield during the Philippine–American War. The conflict started when Pvt. William W. Grayson shot a Filipino soldier in San Juan Bridge between Santa Mesa and San Juan. In late 2003, the National Historical Commission of the Philippines had determined that the conflict did not happen on San Juan Bridge, but at the juncture of Sociego and Silencio Streets.

Up until the early American period, Santa Mesa was just one of the barrios that comprised Sampaloc, which was a town of the defunct province of Manila before it was absorbed by the city of Manila upon its chartering in 1901.[4] In 1911, Santa Mesa became a separate religious district out of Sampaloc when the first and oldest parish in the Philippines in honor of its Titular Patron, the Sacred Heart of Jesus, was established. The created parish is now known as the Old Santa Mesa, which extended from V. Mapa to Santa Mesa Boulevard. The neighborhood was composed of wealthy and aristocrats Spanish and Filipino families who built summer houses, examples of which are the Sociego Mansion, formerly home of the Tuason Family, and the Carriedo Mansion (currently known as the Antique House in Pureza), formerly home of Governor General Francisco Carriedo y Peredo who spearheaded the clean water system of the City of Manila. Affluent families where attracted to Santa Mesa's cooler climate and the picturesque streets that were lined with ylang-ylang trees along Santa Mesa Boulevard. The abundance of these trees started a perfume industry in Santa Mesa — flowers were harvested, pressed and the oil were exported in great quantities to perfumeries in France.[2]

The small community became the location of the hospital to treat the wounded during World War II. The town experienced its growth after the war. Santa Mesa was the site of a 1950s suburban development because of its proximity to Central Manila. The Santa Mesa Market was constructed around this period. It was a big shopping complex, and became popular for the selling of Post eXchange or PX Goods from U.S. bases in the Philippines that's why it was called Stop & Shop.[2]

When the Congressional Districts of Manila were created, Sta. Mesa was separated from Sampaloc, falling to the jurisdiction of the 6th District. The national census still considers Santa Mesa as a part of Sampaloc for statistical purposes.


Santa Mesa is located in the eastern section of the City of Manila. It is bounded to the west by Lacson Avenue separating it from San Miguel; by Ramon Magsaysay Boulevard to the north bordering it from Sampaloc. The northeast boundary of Santa Mesa is west of SM City Sta. Mesa shopping mall. Although the mall has "Santa Mesa" on its name, it is located in Quezon City very near the city limits of Manila.[5]

The southwestern side of Santa Mesa is along Pasig River while the southern and eastern sides are along the San Juan River. Across the San Juan River are the cities of San Juan to the east and a small portion of Mandaluyong to the southeast. Across Pasig River, are the Manila areas of Santa Ana to the south and Pandacan to the southeast.

The topography of the area is relatively flat as some of the natural variations in elevations have been evened out due to urbanization.

Sites of interest

The main campus of the Polytechnic University of the Philippines, seen from the air.
The main campus of the Polytechnic University of the Philippines, seen from the air.


Churches of Santa Mesa
Name Image Location / GPS Coordinates Denomination Notes
Baptist Bible Church Sociego Street Baptists
Gloria Dei Lutheran Church
9600Santa Mesa, Manila Landmarks 34.jpg
Old Santa Mesa Street Lutheran
Jehovah's Witness Kingdom Hall Old Santa Mesa Street Jehovah's Witnesses
Nuestra Señora de Salvacion Parish Church
0614JfSanta Mesa Altrura Church Magsaysay Boulevard Sampaloc Manilafvf 08.jpg
Anonas Street cor Hipodromo Street Roman Catholic
Our Lady of Fatima Parish Church
05537jfOur Lady of Fatima Parish Church Parochial School Bacood Santa Mesa Manilafvf 13.jpg
Lubiran Street cor. Mag. Jose Abad Santos Street Roman Catholic
Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish Church
0804JfOld Santa Mesa Sacred Heart Church School Magsaysay Boulevard Manilafvf 03.jpg
Old Santa Mesa Street Roman Catholic
Sambahan sa Banal na Hapag (IEMELIF Church)
0949jfSambahan sa Banal na Hapag I E M E L I F Magsaysay Boulevard Santa Mesa, Manilafvf 07.jpg
Magsaysay Boulevard Methodist
Seventh-day Adventist Church Hippodromo Street Adventist
SM Valenzuela (IEMELIF Church) Old Santa Mesa Street Methodist
Abundant Life Ministry Inc. Teresa Street Born Again

Parks and plazas

Parks and plazas in Santa Mesa
Name Image Location / GPS Coordinates Notes
Bacood Park Valenzuela Street
Paraiso ng Batang Maynila Bataan cor. Leyte Streets, Bacood
PUP Lagoon
PUP Mabini Campus, Anonas Street
PUP Linear Park
PUP Pasig River Linear Park.jpg
PUP Mabini Campus, Anonas Street
PUP Nemesio E. Prudente Freedom Park (Freedom Plaza)
01834jfSanta Mesa Manila Polytechnic University of the Philippinesfvf 30.jpg
PUP Mabini Campus, Anonas Street


Santa Mesa is made up of 51 Barangays. For statistical convenience for housing and population, the data for Santa Mesa is included in the data of Sampaloc.

Zone 58: Barangays 587, 587-A, 588, 589, 590, 591, 592, and 593

Zone 59: Barangays 594, 595, 596, 597, 598, 599, 600, and 601.

Zone 60: Barangays 602, 603, 604, 605, 606, 610, 611, 612, and 613.

Zone 61: Barangays 607, 608, 609, 614, 615, 616, 617, and 618.

Zone 62: Barangays 619, 620, 621, 622, 623, 624, and 625.

Zone 63: Barangays 626, 627, 628, 629, and 630.

Zone 64: Barangays 631, 632, 633, 634, 635, and 636.

Barangays of Santa Mesa
Barangay Population (2015)[1]
Barangay 587 1,699
Barangay 587-A 1,332
Barangay 588 1,359
Barangay 589 832
Barangay 590 3,368
Barangay 591 2,419
Barangay 592 2,132
Barangay 593 1,927
Barangay 594 1,099
Barangay 595 4,108
Barangay 596 2,106
Barangay 597 2,017
Barangay 598 12,130
Barangay 599 4,088
Barangay 600 5,021
Barangay 601 8,521
Barangay 602 2,434
Barangay 603 705
Barangay 604 1,785
Barangay 605 1,600
Barangay 606 482
Barangay 607 1,599
Barangay 608 737
Barangay 609 972
Barangay 610 1,190
Barangay 611 937
Barangay 612 648
Barangay 613 672
Barangay 614 568
Barangay 615 2,076
Barangay 616 1,014
Barangay 617 740
Barangay 618 865
Barangay 619 1,527
Barangay 620 753
Barangay 621 1,874
Barangay 622 1,264
Barangay 623 1,081
Barangay 624 1,144
Barangay 625 1,137
Barangay 626 1,404
Barangay 627 1,148
Barangay 628 11,922
Barangay 629 1,682
Barangay 630 2,138
Barangay 631 2,529
Barangay 632 1,426
Barangay 633 1,698
Barangay 634 1,707
Barangay 635 716
Barangay 636 2,562


  1. ^ a b "Highlights of the Philippine Population 2015 Census of Population". Philippine Statistics Authority. Retrieved July 11, 2017.
  2. ^ a b c Alcazaren, Paulo (June 13, 2012). "Sta. Mesa: Manila's northeastern edge"". Retrieved December 10, 2021.
  3. ^ "City of Manila, Philippine Islands". Library of Congress. Retrieved 2021-12-10.
  4. ^ "An act to incorporate the City of Manila". Act No. 183 of July 31, 1901. Retrieved June 6, 2022.
  5. ^ "Metro Manila Malls - SM City Sta. Mesa". SM Prime. Retrieved on 2014-11-23.

Coordinates: 14°36′N 121°01′E / 14.600°N 121.017°E / 14.600; 121.017