The Week in Travel (2/1/2013)

The world of travel moves fast!   Let’s keep up–together.   On Fridays,  Traveling IQ curates the highlights from the past week:
Nude dude San Francisco

*You can leave your heart in San Francisco, you can be sure to wear flowers in your hair, but don’t forget to cover your “genitals, perineum, and anal region,” now that the city’s ban on nudity has officially gone into effect (via RT).

*With Valentine’s Day approaching, woo your honey-bunny at one of the “ten romantic places to see before you die” (via Times of India).

*NYC, what is it about you?  See for yourself in this stunning 360 degree, interactive map (via The Telegraph).

*You might want to reconsider your trip to Russia, as the country’s anti-gay law–already in place in St. Petersburg and other cities–aims to criminalize “homosexual propaganda” nationally (via Edge).

*Enjoy a pink and magenta hued lunch with Ken, at the world’s first Barbie restaurant, now open in Taiwan (via CNN).

*Some like it hot… while some not.  The travel doctors at MAW take the “sexual temperature” of the 19 gay resorts in Ft. Lauderdale (via Man About World).

What did I miss?  Share your favorite travel news in the comments below or by posting on the Traveling IQ Facebook page.

(Photo via Reuters)

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The Week in Travel (1/18/13)

The world of travel moves fast!   Let’s keep up–together.   On Fridays,  Traveling IQ curates the highlights from the past week:

Sydney Sizzles

Sydney Sizzles

*Baby, it’s cold outside, but it ain’t nothing compared to the coldest city on earth–Yakutsk in Eastern Siberia–where temperatures plummet to minus 45C/49F (via The Independent).  In an alternate hemisphere, Sydney, Australia, records its hottest day ever at 45C/114F (via Sydney Morning Herald).

*The United States of America is inaugurating Barack Obama as its President on Monday.  And Washington D.C. will be celebrating from Mall (via Washington Post) to Ball (via NY Times).

*The Gray Lady names Rio de Janeiro #1 (via NY Times).  Find your top travel destination for 2013 (via Traveling IQ).

*While in Mexico, don’t drink the water; while in Beijing, don’t breathe the air (via NY Times).

*In air travel news: the Boeing Dreamliner is a nightmare (via USA Today), and American Airlines unveils a new look to mixed reviews (via NBC News).

*Looking for love in all the wrong places?  Book a trip to one of America’s Cruisiest Gay Cities (via About.com).

What did I miss?  Share your favorite travel news in the comments below or by posting on the Traveling IQ Facebook page.

(Photo via Toby Zerna/Sunday Telegraph)

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The W Mexico City Satisfies

W Mexico City View

When was the last time someone promised to satisfy your every wish?

The W Mexico City will be your swanky genie-in-a-bottle. Whether you want a mariachi band performing in your bathtub or VIP tickets to a private club, the W concierge will make it happen through their “Whatever/Whenever” service (legally permitting, of course). Located in the Polanco area, steps from luxury shopping, galleries and Bosque Chapultepec, the largest city park in Latin America, the W Mexico is the place to indulge.

With the AWAY Spa and Fitness Center, Whiskey Bar, Solea restaurant at your fingertips–and spacious rooms that feature a hammock in your shower (should you be exhausted from your hygiene regimen)–you may have to force yourself to venture beyond the hotel’s colorfully accented lobby.

W Mexico City exterior

Read my full Mexico City travel article on Edge.

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The Week in Travel (1/4/13)

The world of travel moves fast!   Let’s keep up–together.   This week, Traveling IQ curates the highlights of the upcoming year:

Topping 2013

There is a Top for you, regardless of who you are.  This Top has been chosen by experts, to make you happy, to make you whole, to expand your horizons, and to guide you toward finding that elusively special spot.

Now, in 2013, will your Travel Top be…

*Amsterdam.  Holland’s forward-thinking capital is serving up major museum renovations, locavore restaurants, and cutting edge architecture, while celebrating the 400 year anniversary of its canals (via Conde Nast Traveler).

*Portugal.  Oozing “old European charm” with it’s Medieval towns and historic quarters, the pace in Portugal is soothingly slow and its locals increasingly thirsty (via Globespots).

*Sri Lanka.  After a 26-year civil war and a devastating tsunami, this South Asia country has bounced back and is one of the best-value destinations around (via USA Today/Lonely Planet).

*Myanmar.  After decades of seclusion, men in skirts invite you to explore traditional culture, colonial architecture, and villages largely unchanged by the past 50 years (via Art Info).

*India.  Few places in the world can offer the stark contrasts of beautiful and awful, breathtaking and grotesque, while being considered the pinnacle for independent travelers (via BootsnAll).

*New York City.  King of the Hill and Top of the Heap, the city that doesn’t sleep is still the top gay travel destination for 2013 (via Advocate).

What did I miss?  Share your favorite travel news in the comments below or by posting on the Traveling IQ Facebook page.

(Photo via MSN)

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Happy Travels in 2013!

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As 2012 comes to a close, thank you to all the Traveling IQ readers (from 138 different countries!) for another wonderful year.

Wishing you all happy travels of our huge, small world in 2013!

(Photo courtesy to WordPress.com’s “2012 Year in Blogging” report)

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The Week in Travel (12/21/12)

The world of travel moves fast!   Let’s keep up–together.   On Fridays,  Traveling IQ curates the highlights from the past week:

SantaClausthroughsecurity

Has Santa been naughty or nice?

*Need a little help getting into the Holiday spirit?  Tour the most Christmassy places on the planet (via CNN) and follow Mr. Claus around the world (via CNN).

*Oh New Year’s Eve, how you force unattainable expectations!  This year, visit a spot worthy of welcoming 2013. (via CNN).

*Gay marriage has a new Caribbean destination.  The tiny island of Saba, located in the Dutch Caribbean, has legalized gay and lesbian marriage (via Passport Magazine).

*Tourists are not flocking to war-torn Gaza, but if they could, they would discover ancient archeological ruins and Mediterranean coastlines.  Michael Luongo offers a glimpse into what tourism in the region could be (via Huffington Post).

*Skiing is a seasonal sport for most.  Surprise, it’s always winter(y) somewhere.  Ski bums can spend all year on the slopes (via NY Times).

*Our vacation photos had a stressful week.  On Monday, Instascamgram announced it had the right to sell your photos (via CNET) before assuring us it didn’t (via CNET).  Confused and betrayed, photographers started dating new photo sharing apps, or at least embarking on open relationships (via Huffington Post).

What did I miss?  Share your favorite travel news in the comments below or by posting on the Traveling IQ Facebook page.

(Photo via CNN)

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The Week in Travel (12/7/12)

The world of travel moves fast!   Let’s keep up–together.   On Fridays,  Traveling IQ curates the highlights from the past week:

Mural of Prince Harry Shirtless in London’s Manbar gay club

*Royal babe, indeed!   Refusing to be overshadowed by his future niece or nephew, a mural of a shirtless Prince Harry now permanently hangs in the London gay club, Manbar  (via Evening Standard).

*Not without controversy, “Europe’s first gay-friendly mosque” opened in Paris this week–welcoming gay Muslims and allowing men and women to pray together (via France 24).

*Need a new place to lay your head?  Stay at the best new hotels to have opened in 2012 (via Fodor’s).

*In gay destination wedding news: on Wednesday, the Supreme Court of Mexico ruled unanimously for same-sex marriage to be recognized in the entire country (via Salon); and very early Thursday morning, Washington State began issuing marriage licenses for same-sex couples (via Seattle Times).

*Luxury hotels want to serve you during daylight too, offering day-only rates for your business or pleasure (via CNN).

*Tall and tan and young and lovely, the boy from Ipanema goes walking; and when he passes, Grindr, Scruff and Manhunt go…ahhh!  Yes, in preparation for the 2014 World Cup and 2016 Olympic Games, Brazil is unveiling a new Wi-Fi network, offering internet access on the beaches of Rio de Janeiro (via Business Wire).

What did I miss?  Share your favorite travel news in the comments below or by posting on the Traveling IQ Facebook page.

(Photo via Evening Standard)

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The Week in Travel (11/23/12)

The world of travel moves fast!   Let’s keep up–together.   On Fridays,  Traveling IQ curates the highlights from the past week:

San Francisco bans public nudity

*You can leave your heart in San Francisco, but keep your privates to yourself.  The city’s supervisors have voted to officially ban public nudity, marking the end of an era for the City by the Bay.   Exemptions, however, are being made for Folsom Street Fair and similar festivals.   (via Huffington Post)

*Uganda plans on passing anti-gay laws carrying life imprisonment for homosexuality… wait for it… as a “Christmas gift.”  (via BBC News)

*And then a glimmer of hope on the continent:  Malawi temporarily suspends laws against same-sex relationships and orders police not to arrest gays, pending a decision on whether to repeal the legislation.  (via Reuters)

*It’s easier than ever to stay on your diet while traveling, with healthier airline meals.  (via USA Today)

*Who wants to spend the night in the pooper?  Apparently a lot of people.  Japanese contemporary artist Tatzu Nishino has transformed a public restroom in Osaka’s Nakanoshima Park into a one-room hotel–already fully booked for the duration of the installation.  (via Huffington Post)

What did I miss?  Share your favorite travel news in the comments below or by posting on the Traveling IQ Facebook page.

(Photo by Lea Suzuki, The Chronicle/SF)

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Let’s Get Visual: East London

The Traveling IQ vault is packed with travel photos that have never seen the light of day. They’re lonely and want to say hello.

Here’s a little photo tour of East London, from my November 2011 visit.

East London has undergone a dramatic change over the last decade. The once isolated area beyond the Tower of London, is now home to trendy shops, cafes, art galleries and open-air markets.

During my visit last year, I explored the area with my trusted “insider” Urban Gentry guide and stayed for the grand opening of the Aloft London Excel Hotel–all as the city was prepping to host the London 2012 Olympic Games.

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Mexico City’s Ravishing Renaissance

Big and gritty and complex and glamorous, Mexico City defies categorization. El Distrito Federal or DF, as the city is commonly called, is far more nuanced than many of the country’s famous resort towns, where the tourism bubble stays easily intact.

Here, you are in it; it’s real life in a real, big city. This is where people work, live, eat… and, yes, party. Spending a few days among DF’s 20 million people, you’ll discover a vibrant culture, delicious food, a hoppin’ gay scene, and a colorful whirlwind of unexpected surprises…

*Read my full article published in EDGE by clicking on the photo below:

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