Why Basking in a Bali Style Resort in Broome is good for you by Jo Castro

Some time ago I was sitting at the hairdresser’s when a Travel Agent I knew came in and sat down next to me to get his monthly short back and sides. While we were both having our hair cut (mine was prettier than his) we got chatting about holidays and one of the things he said to me was …

“When I go on a holiday I always try to ensure that the standard of accommodation we’ve booked is going to be better than what we have at home.”

And, while I know he doesn’t live in a luxury mansion or anything, I understood what he meant.

Too many times He Himself and I have booked into less than salubrious hotels or self catering accommodation and been disappointed, because quite honestly things just haven’t come up to muster for the price we’ve paid.

We’ve sat down, looked at one another and thought:

“This is our holiday – but why are we paying so much for something like this?” because we’ve realized that what we have at home is a whole lot more salubrious, pleasant to look at and more  serviceable.  Plus, at home there are beers in the fridge too.

It’s the memory of times like this when our tendency, like so many others in WA, has been to book a holiday in Bali for a bit of luxury at half the price.

Why Basking in a Bali Style Resort in Broome is good for you by Jo Castro
You don’t have to go to Bali for tropical colours

But none of this applies to a tropical retreat in Broome, where I was fortunate to stay recently.

A Bali style resort in Broome

The Mantra Frangipani

Why Basking in a Bali Style Resort in Broome is good for you by Jo Castro
Michelle Spinks, General Manager, and scenes from around the resort

I’ve found out that you don’t have to fly all the way to Bali to get Balinese style because I’ve just been lucky enough to visit Broome where I stayed at the Mantra Frangipani, a resort that’s within an easy walk of Cable Beach.

Why Basking in a Bali Style Resort in Broome is good for you by Jo Castro
The lovely Cable Beach

To give you further bearings, The Mantra Frangipani is within a 15 minute walk of the popular Zoo Bar, and I know this because after a gourmet meal that included scallops and pork belly we walked back to the resort talking and laughing about all sorts of things including living overseas, and the saucy tales we’d heard from some Broome locals earlier about the infamous weekly wet T-Shirt competition held at the Roebuck Hotel.

Yes, really.

Why Basking in a Bali Style Resort in Broome is good for you by Jo Castro

Blue pools and palm trees

Had I been staying at The Mantra Frangipani for a bone fide  holiday, I would definitely have been totally slug-like and slothful and not moved from poolside, because there are two temptingly blue, temperature controlled swimming pools surrounded by tall palms, and bamboo that rustles in the breeze.

Why Basking in a Bali Style Resort in Broome is good for you by Jo Castro

After two Matso’s Ginger Beers I’m sure I heard those tall bamboo grasses whisper:  “Lie by me, love me, go swim in the pool – the one with the flowing waterfall.”


Ohhh, I have to go back for longer. This resort just screams “Relax!” It’s got to be good for you.

Tropical nights

There may not be a restaurant at the Mantra Frangipani, but the rooms are well equipped and spacious with cooking facilities that are clean and modern – in fact you’ll more than likely be rushing out to buy some fresh sea food or steaks in order to cook up a storm on your outside barbecue, in the pretty palm filled front courtyard of your ground floor apartment.

One of our party, the talented Mr Jasper, displayed awesome culinary skills and cooked us prawn and beef kebabs with Aioli dressing, followed by savoury pancakes, followed by succulent steaks with green beans and tasty sautéed potatoes … followed by lemon merinque pie – Phew, he’s a keeper!

Why Basking in a Bali Style Resort in Broome is good for you by Jo Castro

He really showed us what could be achieved in the self catering stakes if you put your mind to it.

We really enjoyed dinner al fresco on that sultry, tropical night with the stars shining above, and a harvest moon rising in the sky. With everything we needed around us in the apartment  it felt like being at home in a private courtyard, but better, and with champagne and wine cooling in the fridge it was comforting not to have to worry about designating a driver to go anywhere.

And then, after a good night’s sleep on great big beds in our own spacious apartments Mr Jasper prepared us breakfast by the pool the next morning. How good is that?

Why Basking in a Bali Style Resort in Broome is good for you by Jo Castro
A breakfast barbie with benefits around the pool.

Yep, definitely recommended as a stress buster and the antithesis to rushed work morning  breakfasts at home.

After that it was a back to the apartment to get ready for excursions which I’ll write about in another post.

Why Basking in a Bali Style Resort in Broome is good for you by Jo Castro
What you’ll find inside your apartment

12 things you’re gonna love about the Mantra Frangipani

  1. The spacious apartments, and the big beds.
  2. The tropical décor reminiscent of Bali resorts.
  3. The outside showers which come complete with Bali statues, and you might occasionally be lucky to see little green tree frogs – they won’t harm you and are part of the Kimberley environment.
  4. Your own portico entrance leading to a Bali style courtyard filled with tropical plants and trees.
  5. Not one, but two swimming pools.
  6. The landscaped tropical gardens complete with lily ponds.
  7. The washing machine hidden away in a cupboard, along with iron and ironing board (not that you’ll need to do much ironing in casual Broome).
  8. The well equipped kitchen, including a dishwasher … Who wants to wash up on holiday?
  9. The attention to detail; big wooden mirrors,  huge bedside lamps, an easy to read alarm clock by the bed, and an in-room safe.
  10. Air conditioning, and a fan above the bed … Bliss
  11. A place to hang and dry your towels and fluffy beach towels (supplied).
  12. Free Wi-Fi.

I had a chat to Michelle Spinks, the General Manager, who is friendly and helpful and runs a ship that is professional and yet easy going. She exhibits a discreet and yet professional presence, looking after people’s needs, booking tours when required.

“The Mantra Frangipani is a lot different to a city hotel. It’s much more relaxed,” she said. “And you’ll find that Broome is like an island. You can’t go anywhere unless you’re thinking ‘long distance’ so all you have to do is chill out and kick back, or maybe book some local tours around Broome.”

Of course Broome is the southern gateway to the vast Kimberley, so the other option is to book a longer tour along the famous Gibb River Road into the outback.

Why Basking in a Bali Style Resort in Broome is good for you by Jo Castro

Michelle’s Top 11 Things to do in Broome

  1. Go beer tasting and have lunch at Matso’s Brewery – try their Mango Beer, Chango (Chilli and Mango Beer) or Ginger Cooler
  2. Take a Camel Tour
  3. Have a ride on a Hovercraft
  4. View the giants of the sea and go whale watching (in season)
  5. Visit Willie Creek Pearl Farm
  6. Enjoy the ‘Staircase to the Moon’ (in season)
  7. See the dinosaur footprints at Gantheaume Point
  8. Take a trip to the Horizontal Falls
  9. Drive to Cape Leveque
  10. Chill out on a Sunset Cruise
Why Basking in a Bali Style Resort in Broome is good for you by Jo Castro
The Mantra’s mantra, and tropical sights from around the resort

 Top Tip from Michelle

“What I  suggest to guests is to hop on the town bus at 6.30 am – it stops right outside the hotel – and go to Gantheaume Point to see the dinosaur footprints. Then in the cool of the morning  you can walk 5kms along Cable Beach to the car park and catch the next bus back to the Frangipani or go into town. The town bus costs just $10 a day and you can hop on and off at numerous places. You really don’t need to hire a car in Broome.”

 Fast Facts

  • There are a total of 62 one, two or three bedroom apartments available at the Frangipani.
  • The hotel is on Millington Road, the airport is about 5km away – a 10 minutes drive.
  • Cyclone season is from November to April.
  • It’s only about a 10 minute walk from the hotel to several cafes, restaurants and Cable Beach.
  • The Town Bus stops right outside the hotel.

The Mantra's mantra, and tropical sights from around the resort

Find the Mantra Frangipani

For Bookings and Information:-

Getting There

  • Broome is a short 2 hours 35 minutes flight from Perth or a 2398km drive north! Qantas offers 25 flights each week to Broome from Perth, Melbourne, Brisbane and Sydney on Boeing 737-800 and B717 aircraft. Our flight was comfortable, lunch was served and there is more legroom than on the budget airline carriers. The Qantas Lounge at Perth domestic airport is a draw card for business passengers wanting  room to relax or work prior to their flight – there’s also the benefit of free Wi-Fi , refreshments, magazines and newspapers.

Disclaimer: Jo’s trip was courtesy of Mantra Hotels and Qantas.

I’d love to know if you’ve stayed at a Mantra Hotel or have a favourite holiday resort? Why not share your experiences with us in the comments?

If you’d like to read about how to create a Balinese themed garden, pop over here “How to Create a Balinese Garden without going to Bali”.

Oh, and please don’t forget to read the next post on ZigaZag which will be all about why Broome “Rocks and Pearls,” as a destination.

Until next time,



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  1. Broome looks like a paradise – perfect surroundings, delicious food and I guess, wonderful weather 🙂

  2. All this talk of Broome and it’s fast becoming somewhere I’d like to visit – I’ve seen so much else of this amazing country, but I’m yet to stroll along Cable Beach and soak up the serenity I’ve been told about by those who’ve been. We have two kids under 5. Did you notice if the area caters for little ones, with a playground or two and some family-friendly restaurants?

  3. Hi Rachael, yes it really is a fabulous place to visit. The restaurants are really laid back and friendly so I’m sure most of them would be fine for kids. I wasn’t on the look out for playgrounds, so in all honesty I can’t tell you about any, but Broome is so casual and the beach is gorgeous, and things like the Trike Tour (I’ll be writing about this next week!) would be something that they would be safe in and you would really enjoy! You’ll see why 🙂 The Mantra Frangipani would be a great place to stay with children because there are two (fenced) pools and the apartments are nice and big.

  4. Wow looks amazing! Looking at going with my husband for our anniversary soon. Where are some good restaurants for some nice romantic meals ? I love the look of that limo bicycle! What is that and where do I sign up! Bec xx

  5. This sounds divine. I agree, when we decide to be budget conscious we usually hate where we stay. Just the other day my husband said “no more worrying about the price”. We like to have at least as good as we have at home.

  6. Absolute decadence and I love it!
    Your hairdresser friend is so right. Why skimp? Something to keep in mind for next trip.

  7. Love the look of this place and all the interesting facts.

    I am so with you on wanting to stay in a place that is at least as nice as my home – though granted there have been plenty of occasions lately where a tent has had to suffice – but then it’s usually in an area of stunning natural beauty.

    I have a decadent stay at a Four Seasons in Costa Rica coming up – and quite looking forward to the pampering.

  8. HaHa! You had me confused. When I first started reading you had me scratching me head as to where Broome is on Bali! Looks like a gorgeous resort. I wouldn’t mind spending a few hours poolside!

  9. That’s so funny Nancie! I guess I should have been more explicit in the title for my overseas readers, but I hope as you read on it became clearer. Or perhaps it was a good way of hooking you in to read on? 😉 Anyway, thanks for reading and yes, those pools at the Mantra Frangipani in Broome (not Bali!) are a big drawcard.

  10. I know what you mean Leigh. I’m also ok with camping or staying in accommodation that’s not brilliant if there’s a reason for it – ie a remote area of natural stunning beauty to be explored, or because we’re on a hike etc. But when I expect a bit of pampering and we’re paying our dues for it, then it has to be better than home, or what’s the point. I hope you have a wonderully decadent stay at the Four Seasons in Costa Rica. Now that sounds truly exotic and wonderful!

  11. That’s exactly our mantra, Jackie! Budget conscious has its place when we are travelling somewhere with a specific purpose – then it’s ok to rough it. But if we’re expecting a little luxury, then it has to be better than home.

  12. Hello Bec, congratulations on your anniversary! The Mantra Frangipani would be a brilliant place to stay. You can have nice romantic meals in your courtyard or go out somewhere like the Sunset Bar on cable beach – very romantic watching the trains of camels walking the beach as the sun sets. I’ll be writing about the limo trike (it’s actually a motorbike) in a future post 🙂 otherwise pop over to Broome Trike Tours on Google.

  13. What an amazing place to be pampered. I love those amazing flowers. That car looks like one of a kind, what is it?

  14. That car is actually a ‘limo trike’ Neva! It’s the only one of its kind in the world apparently! It’s built on the back of a Harley Davidson and comes complete with four inside seats, a bar and two seats at the back. I’m going to write a post about our adventure on that trike in a future post!!

  15. I really do think that everything I know about Broome comes from you. Just looking at the pictures, I would have mistaken you for being in the middle of Bali. The Mantra Frangipani definitely got the mood right. That self-catered dinner your Mr. Jasper made sounds incredible. Too bad he doesn’t come with the room.

  16. Ha Ha! I know, Michele! Wish a Mr Jasper came with every room – he’s a keeper! Thanks for your comments. Yes, the Mantra Frangipani really does make you think you’re in Bali.

  17. My kind of place – for sure! The shot of that pie has my mouth-watering. . .I wouldn’t have left the poolside either.

  18. Gosh Jo, the Mantra Frangipani sounds like the place to be! You’re so right – scrimping on accommodation is very easy to do. But, it can have such a huge impact on the quality of the holiday experience. This is a post with lots of great advice combined with great photos. It really makes me want to be there.

  19. Thanks for your comments Wanda, yes it’s a fine but important line. Hope you might get to the mantra Frangipani one day too 🙂

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