Tag Archives: Gay Travel

IQ in EDGE: Puerto Vallarta’s Almar Resort

Couple at Pool at Mantamar Beach Club

The Mantamar Beach Club at the Almar Resort

The newest and only luxury beachfront LGBTQ hotel in Puerto Vallarta will make your tub bubbleth over. With hot tubs in 29 of its 78 suites; an infinity pool (featuring swim-up bar and more hot tubs) off the sands of Los Muertos Beach; member access to Mantamar Beach Club, the premier beach club in Zona Romantica; and a rooftop bar with heart-warming sunset views, drag shows and — yes, even more hot tubs — the Almar Resort is making sassy classy in Mexico’s favorite gay beach retreat…

Click here to read the full article published in EDGE.

Ivan Quintanilla published in Edge Media

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A Case for the Gay Hotel

Pool at gay hotel

A Perfect Day at the Almar Resort in Puerto Vallarta

I’ve recently had conversations with several gay men in their 20’s about the necessity, or lack thereof, of the “gay hotel.”  First, I think it is truly amazing that many of our younger gay peers feel so completely comfortable in their skin in any surrounding.  I think it is tangible evidence of progress.  And one I celebrate—wholeheartedly—as I toast with my frozen cosmopolitan, pomegranate margarita or glass of crisp sauvignon blanc. But these conversations have made me examine why I personally am still drawn to the congregation of gay.  Now, I love to travel often and on many different types of trips, frequented by many different types of people.  And I don’t ever want that to change.  But yet I find myself consistently drawn to the comradery of the gay hotel.

I’d guess this is greatly generational.  Perhaps it’s the childhood years of being schooled in the appropriate ways boys gesture. Or the exhausting energy expended in youth hoping no one will figure you out.  Or the many times you heard the f-word and continued walking pretending you weren’t the subject.   And I am thrilled if kids these days don’t grow up with any of these same concerns.  Because though I have never been targeted or mocked as a traveling adult, this well-adjusted gay New Yorker still can’t wait to return to Puerto Vallarta or Key West or Provincetown.

There is a world of difference between not feeling endangered and feeling truly welcome.  I am so accustomed to my life in New York City, where I never worry about holding my boyfriend’s hand as we stroll through Hell’s Kitchen or fret if my shorts are the appropriate length on a hot, summer day (I’m bringing the 5” inseam back!).  With so many elements of which to keep track on vacation—currency exchanges, language barriers, convoluted directions—watching yourself so you are not watched seems like wasted energy.

I prefer to spend that time meeting new friends—many of whom, especially now in the age of social media, will continue to be part of my life beyond my departure from the destination.  I have been fortunate to share unforgettable moments with some pretty fantastic people who I may or may not ever see again.  But if I ever visit their home cities, I guarantee you they will be my first call.  Because they are now part of my community.

So, I will continue to travel everywhere and stay anywhere, but I will always have a soft spot for the gay hotel.  And I hope all of our generations can join in the spirited, tipsy conversations which could never be replicated on an app or anywhere else, other than at that pool, with that fruity cocktail in hand, while blasting that Deborah Cox remix that will forever give us life.

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A Queens’ Museum in Great Britain

QueenEngland

There is more than one Queen in England.

And soon their histories will find national representation.

Queer Britain is working to establish the UK’s first national LGBTQ+ museum.  With an anticipated opening in 2021, the brick- and-mortar museum will host permanent and temporary exhibits, with an innovative digital presence.  It will feature objects and records from the worlds of art, fashion, film, literature, TV, theatre, news, music, diaries, letters, photographs and legal records.

According to London Mayor Sadiq Kahn, “As Mayor, it’s so important to me that London is seen as a city where LGBTQ+ people feel valued, happy and safe – this sends a clear message to the world that London is a beacon of diversity.”

Queer Britain hopes its museum extends beyond celebrating  modern-day gay London and creates historical context.   As its website further explains, “Many young people now have a strong sense of freedom about identity, but not how these were formed or the lives of those who came before them. A healthy plant needs deep roots.”

For more information, visit QueerBritain.org.uk.

QueerBritainIMAGES COURTESY OF BISHOPSGATE INSTITUTE / (CC) LSE / NAPOLEON SARONY / JANE MCCORMICK SMITH / BEX WADE / ROBERT TAYLOR (via Queer Britain)

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Miami Beach Gay Pride Gets the Olympic Treatment

Gus Kenworthy© Jeff Swinger-USA TODAY Sports

On April 2-8, Olympic freestyle skier Gus Kenworthy will trade the snow for sand as a Grand Marshall of Miami Beach Gay Pride 2018.

The Sochi Silver Medalist, PyeongChang puppy-saver and Ricky Martin admirer (see photo below) will join musical guests, festive floats and 135,000 partiers for the week-long celebration.

Celebrating its 10-year anniversary, Miami Beach Gay Pride shifts into party gear on Friday, April 6, with a VIP Gala at Faena Forum and Pride Kick-off Party at Basement in the Edition Hotel.  On Saturday, the festivities move surf-side with the all-day Beach Party Festival, featuring DJ Yazz, DJ Dan Slater and a performance by Betty Who.

Starting Sunday at noon, the Pride Parade struts down Ocean Drive and keeps the party pumping past nightfall with music, fireworks and a headlining performance by perennial pop favorite, Taylor Dayne.  For a view fit for a queen, reserve a table at the recently reopened Palace, alongside the Pride Parade route.

For more information and tickets, visit MiamiBeachGayPride.com.

For a preview of the festivities, check out the video below:

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Filed under Events, Gay, U.S.A.

The Week in Travel (6/14/2013)

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

NYPridephoto

*June is Gay Pride Month, with rainbow-themed festivities and parades all over the U.S.  For anyone who has ever wondered why these celebrations are still important, click through for your answer (via CNN).

*Save by booking your summer vacation on the first day of the season.  On June 21,”CyberSummer” offers 24-hour travel deals throughout the Caribbean, Florida, Mexico, Latin America and South Africa (via CyberSummerTravel).

*As summer descends on NYC, its residents ascend to the city’s rooftops.  Raise your glass at an elevated bar (via Time Out) or shimmy up toward a gay rooftop party (via Next Magazine).

*Celebrate Father’s Day at a destination named for Papa (via AOL).

*Seventy-five years ago, Fascist Italy exiled homosexuals to the Tremiti Islands, creating both a prison regime and the country’s first gay community (via BBC News).

*Russian parliament confirms gay travel dollars are not welcomed in their country by unanimously passing an anti-gay bill that bans–among many other things–gay pride rallies (via Herald Sun).

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

(Photo via Policymic)

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The Week in Travel (4/26/2013)

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

I'm too sexy for this country.

I’m too sexy for this country…

*The price of beauty is deportation.   Or so discovered Omar Borkan Al Gala (pictured above) and two other men, deported from Saudi Arabia for being… wait for it… wait for it… too handsome (via Asiantown.net).

*Time to expand your destination wedding options.  On Tuesday, France became the 14th country to allow same-sex marriage (Yahoo).  The next day, the Rhode Island Senate approved legislation to make the “Hope” state the 10th in the U.S., in addition to Washington D.C., to extend marriage rights to same-sex couples (via The Advocate).

*In other sweet news, earlier this month two men married in Africa’s first traditional gay wedding (via Daily Mail).

* In the Navy, yes, you can sail the seven seas, but apparently cannot afford to dock in New York City.  This year, Congress has sequestered the sailors.  Because of federal budget cuts, the Navy’s annual Fleet Week is cancelled (via AMNY).

*More than ever, support Boston with your travel dollars… here are ten reasons why (via PeterGreenberg.com).

*Go big or stay home!  Splurge at a hotel worthy of your holiday (via Conde Nast Traveler).

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

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The Week in Travel (3/22/2013)

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

Snakes on a Plane

If he only had a knife…

*Your liquid soap, cologne and moisturizing lotion over 3.4 ounces will still not be allowed in your carry-on, but your knives, ski poles and toy bats can board the aircraft, effective April 25, 2013 (via CNN).

*Scraping the sky on Instagram from 2,716 feet (via Huffington Post).

*Rumor has it, “air rage” is on the rise (via CNN).

*Boys will be boys, and bears and beasts and stags and trees.  Photographer Charles Fréger captures men of Europe dressed in outfits wilder than the National Tour of Priscilla Queen of the Desert (via National Geographic).

*The same oil that fried up your lunch might be powering your next flight to Europe (via BBC).

*Curious about the sexual orientation of a building?  Tour the Gayest Buildings in America (via California Home & Design).

*A time-lapse film captures New York City in the fast lane (via Kickstarter):

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

(Photo: Still from movie, Snakes on a Plane)

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The Week in Travel (3/8/2013)

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

Turkey's National Sport

The National Sport of Turkey

*We connect with foreign cultures in many ways:  music, art, food, literature, etc.  With Turkey, may I suggest their National Sport (via BuzzFeed).

*If you liked it then you should’ve put a stamp on it.  The U.S. Postal Service may be selling architecturally distinctive post offices because of its financial problems (via NY Times).

*Ten indispensable apps for last-minute travel (via Smarter Travel).

*The joyous experience of air travel is getting more complicated.  U.S. airports have already started experiencing delays as a result of automatic federal spending cuts (via ABC News).

*The U.S. State Department has launched a web portal providing information for gay travelers, who sometimes face specific risks when visiting foreign countries.  The section will note if there have been recent attacks against LGBT-identified people or, more generally, whether local laws permit consensual sexual relations between two people of the same gender (via BBC).

*If at first you don’t succeed… try, try again?  An Australian billionaire has released blueprints for the Titanic II, a replica of the original ship which sank in April 1912, with plans to set sail across the Atlantic in 2016.  Oh yeah, FYI… the ship will be built in China (via ABC News).

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

(Photo via BuzzFeed)

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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 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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