The stars align for Frangipani B&B

TripAd­vi­sor rates the Port Dou­glas B&B with a cov­eted five-star rank­ing

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - FRONT PAGE -

FRANGIPANI B&B was re­cently awarded a cer­tifi­cate of ex­cel­lence by TripAd­vi­sor, the con­sumer- driven tourist ac­com­mo­da­tion rank­ing web­site.

All op­er­a­tors covet the five-star rank­ing on the glob­ally dom­i­nant web­site, but it comes with a cer­tain chal­lenge too.

‘‘It’s put the pres­sure on,’’ says Leona Brown, who owns and op­er­ates Frangipani B&B and Villa, in An­drews Close, Port Dou­glas, with her hus­band Bob.

‘‘Now I have to keep achiev­ing to live up to it.’’

The Browns have op­er­ated the B&B and the ac­com­pa­ny­ing villa for the past cou­ple of years but first came to hol­i­day in Dou­glas about 12 years ago. Bob had his own big ac­count­ing and fi­nan­cial plan­ning prac­tice in Mel­bourne for years be­fore they de­cided to re­tire up here.

Six years ago they bought their Frangipani prop­er­ties as a re­tire­ment house, in­tend­ing to use the bounty of rooms as guest ac­com­mo­da­tion for their five chil­dren and their fam­i­lies.

But the ex­pected glut of fam­ily guests has not re­ally ma­te­ri­alised, and af­ter a while Leona thought there might be some­thing else they could do with all the ac­com­mo­da­tion at their dis­posal.

So she and Bob set up the B&B and villa as tourist ac­com­mo­da­tion, and Frangipani has since proved ex­tremely well set up and lo­cated – about 80 me­tres from the sand at Solan­der – to at­tract a pre­mium over­seas clien­tele.

About 98 per cent of the clien­tele are from the North­ern Hemi­sphere, par­tic­u­larly Europe and the North Amer­ica. ‘‘The world comes to us,’’ says Leona.

She says her book­ings through early next year are strong and there are even book­ings as far for­ward as Au­gust.

One thing the Browns have no­ticed is the de­mand from for­eign visi­tors for first-class fa­cil­i­ties. In fact Bob can’t help han­ker­ing to set up an even higher stan­dard bou­tiquestyle ho­tel – un­til he reminds him­self he’s sup­posed to be semi-re­tired. He cer­tainly thinks it would be a win­ner with pre­mium cus­tomers.

But Frangipani is keep­ing them both busy enough. ‘‘It’s fun,’’ says Leona, ‘‘it has just ex­ploded!’’

OF­FI­CIALLY EX­CEL­LENT:

Frangipani own­ers Leona and Bob Brown

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