Private Villa Rentals
Attentive Concierge Service, Trusted Experience

The History of Anguilla

Approximately 3500 years ago, a tribe of Amerindians left their native land of South America and sailed out to find a new home. They settled on what is now called Anguilla, a 20 mile long sand bar off the coast of St Martin.

They named the island Malliouhana, which meant "arrow-headed sea serpent" in their native language of Arawak. "Malliouhana" soon became a bustling community with villages, farms, and ceremonial sites.

It was not long before Europeans began to notice the exquisite "Malliouhana." They named the island Anguilla, or "eel", due to the island's elongated shape.

In the 1650s, British settlers came to Anguilla and colonized the island. They set up plantations in the flat center area of the island to grow corn and tobacco. These establishments were short-lived however; the Caribs, a warrior tribe from South America, overtook the population of the Arawak Indians and destroyed the plantations.

More troubles arose in 1666 when French forces took over Anguilla. The island was relinquished to the British through the Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle, but the French continued attempts to invade the British-governed island for 150 years.

Anguilla became a British colony and developed a high degree of home rule. In the 1830's; however, it was forced to enter into a union with nearby islands St. Kitts and Nevis. In 1958 the St. Kitts-Nevis-Anguilla union became a part of the Federation of the West Indies. The Federation collapsed only four years later, and as a result most islands gained institutional constitutions and St. Kitts-Nevis-Anguilla became an associated statehood. With these new privileges, Anguilla became inspired to fight for its independence.

The Anguillan Revolution or Anguilla's Independence Day, commenced on May 30, 1967. On this day, the Anguillans repulsed the Royal St. Kitts Police Force from the island. The British immediately came and interceded establishing a peace-keeping committee. Anguilla was then granted statehood and independence, although debate still presided over Anguilla's succession until December 19, 1980. Anguilla became a British overseas territory with some measure of autonomy in government.

With political tensions finally settling, the 1980s were Anguilla’s entree into the Caribbean tourism sector. This relatively late introduction lends a unique aesthetic to Anguilla’s resort properties not found on other islands in the region.

Mediterranean modern architect Myron Goldfinger designed two striking resorts in the mid-eighties, CoveCastles and Altamer on Shoal Bay. In 1988, Oscar Farmer, the architect responsible for the Hollywood Coliseum oversaw the building of the whitewashed Cap Juluca on the western end of the island.

Conair co-founder, Leandro P. Rizzuto became a major player in Anguilla’s transformation into a vacation paradise when he purchased 35 acres after brief day visit. Instead of building a private residence, he opted to form a company called the Anguillan Development Corporation and use the property as the grounds for a five star resort. Sharing a name with Conair’s culinary appliance division, CuisinArt Golf Resort and Spa opened in 1999. True to its namesake, the resort prioritizes fine dining alongside sustainable practices that include on onsite hydroponic farm, desalination through reverse osmosis and solar energy. CuisinArt debuted a Greg Norman designed golf course in 2011, and opened up The Reef, a sister property in 2016.

The Viceroy, a luxury hotel property opened in 2010, and was sold to Four Seasons in 2016. Although it took a hit from hurricane Irma in 2017, the property was renovated, and reopened its doors to guests in March of 2018.

Today, Anguilla is considered a British dependency, and the island attracts tourists from around the world to play on its golden beaches and swim in its turquoise seas. Luxury villas and resorts offer visitors the best in accommodations for their Anguilla vacations. Fishing and boating, along with gourmet dining and fine beaches, draw visitors to this friendly island.

Anguilla General Information and Villa Rentals

Browse All Anguilla Villas

Browse Anguilla Travel Articles

Our Staff Recommends

Browse All Anguilla Villas

Featured Anguilla Villa Rentals

WIMCO Villas,  Anguilla Vacation rentals RIC PAR, Anguilla, Blowing Point Vacation home rentals, Blowing Point Villas


Spacious and luxurious, gated seaside property, breathtaking views, steps from 2 cove beaches

6 br / 5.5 ba

WIMCO Villas,  Anguilla Vacation rentals IDP LEM, Anguilla, Forest Bay Vacation home rentals, Forest Bay Villas


Secluded villa on a small beach, perfect for kayakers, rooftop patio with spectacular views

3 br / 3 ba

WIMCO Villas,  Anguilla Vacation rentals RIC WHI, Anguilla, Sandy Hill Vacation home rentals, Sandy Hill Villas


Simple and calming, unique design boasts breathtaking views of the ocean and neighboring islands

3 br / 3 ba

WIMCO Villas,  Anguilla Vacation rentals AXA TEQ, Anguilla, Sandy Hill Vacation home rentals, Sandy Hill Villas


Sophisticated and spacious, a short walk from the beach, breathtaking views of the ocean and islands

3 br / 3 ba

Browse All Anguilla Hotels

Featured Anguilla Hotels and Resorts

WIMCO Villas and Hotels, Four Seasons Resort and Residences, Anguilla Resorts. Book now with WIMCO

Four Seasons Resort and Residences

Expansive luxury Caribbean hotel accommodations, gourmet dining, and sea-view wellness spa, to its expert personalized service and relaxed island sophistication - this is the art of the getaway. This is Viceroy.


WIMCO Villas and Hotels, Cap Juluca, Anguilla Resorts. Book now with WIMCO

Cap Juluca

Located on Maundays Bay, on the southwest coast, this private resort offers first class accomodation. Private beach, golf range, watersports, spa. Choose from the casual elegance of the rooms or suites, from 1 to 5 bedrooms with private pool.


WIMCO Villas and Hotels, CoveCastles, Anguilla Resorts. Book now with WIMCO


Situated on Shoal Bay West, this villa complex offers the privacy and luxury of a villa with the full service of a first class hotel. Watersports, tennis, bikes, restaurant, full kitchen.


WIMCO Villas and Hotels, CuisinArt Resort & Spa, Anguilla Resorts. Book now with WIMCO

CuisinArt Resort & Spa

On Rendez-Vous Bay, this Spa resort offers luxury beachfront accommodations. Hydroponics garden, watersports, tennis, pool, beach service, over-sized marble bathroom, private patios or terraces.


WIMCO Villas and Hotels, Carimar Beach Club, Anguilla Resorts. Book now with WIMCO

Carimar Beach Club

Directly on Mead's Bay, this hotel offers great value, an incredible beach, tennis, fully equipped apartments with patio or balcony. Perfect for families, couples or honeymooners.


Back to Top