World Travel Market 2011 Showcases Gay Travel

Author: , November 29th, 2011

The gay travel market is becoming more exciting and vibrant as I discovered at World Travel Market 2011 held in London UK this month. With more nations legalising homosexuality and equality of marriage destinations across Europe, Americas and Asia are beginning to realise their gay travel potential.

Within Europe Israel, Switzerland and Sweden are emerging as the new must-visit destinations leaving the traditional Lesbos, Gran Canaria and Sitges behind.

Tel Aviv has been breaking down negative preconceived perceptions to make it the hottest gay city of the Mediterranean. With daily flights now from Heathrow, Luton, Manchester, its annual Gay Pride in June and the new September annual gay art exhibition – gay travellers will be basking in the Tel Aviv sun and hitting the clubs before discovering the hidden gems off the beaten track in Israel.

Full Story from ETravelBlackboard.com

Click here for gay travel resources.

World’s Largest Gay Cruise Sets Sail in January

Author: , November 29th, 2011

Atlantis Gay CruiseAtlantis Events does things in a big way. It bills itself as the world’s largest travel company specializing in the gay market and for 20 years it has been organizing cruises, tours and gay weeks at resorts. Next year it is organizing what it says is the largest gay cruise in history.

The company has chartered Royal Caribbean’s Allure of the Seas, the world’s largest cruise ship, and it hopes to put 5,400 gays and lesbians on board for a week-long tour of the Caribbean.

The cruise leaves Fort Lauderdale, Florida, on Jan. 29, and returns there on Feb. 5. There are only three ports of call: Labadee in northern Haiti, and Costa Maya and Cozumel, both in Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula.

Full Story from Canada.com

Click here for gay travel resources.

 

Gay Friendly American Airlines Files for Bankruptcy Reorganization

Author: , November 29th, 2011

American Airlines BankruptcyAMR Corporation, the parent company of American Airlines, Inc. and AMR Eagle Holding Corporation (American Eagle), announced today that it filed voluntary petitions for Chapter 11 reorganization in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York.

In a written statement, AMR reports that its Board of Directors determined that a Chapter 11 reorganization is in the “best interest of the company and its stakeholders. Just as with the company’s major airline competitors in recent years, the Chapter 11 process enables American Airlines and American Eagle to continue conducting normal business operations while they restructure their debt, costs and other obligations.

It also reported that American Airlines and American Eagle are operating normal flight schedules today, and their reservations, customer service, AAdvantage program, Admirals Clubs and all other operations are conducting business as usual. Likewise, throughout the Chapter 11 process, American and American Eagle expects to continue to maintain full operations and fly normal schedules.

Full Story from The Examiner

Click here for gay travel resources.

 

Cruise With the Gay Men’s Chorus of LA in 2012

Author: , November 28th, 2011

Gay CruiseHollywood and Broadway aren’t so far apart when it comes to entertainment. The Gay Men’s Chorus of Los Angeles and others toast both during a Film & Theatre Cruise 2012 that will feature live performances and movie screenings on a trip from Los Angeles to New York.

Members of the chorus will perform several times and meet guests on the 17-day spring sailing aboard the Crystal Serenity. Actresses Tippi Hedrin and Kate Burton (“Grey’s Anatomy”), film lecturer Drew Casper, Center Theatre Group artistic director Michael Ritchie and others are scheduled to be part of program too.

Ports of call include Cabo San Lucas, Mexico; Puerto Caldera, Costa Rica; the Panama Canal; Georgetown, Grand Cayman; Fort Lauderdale, Fla.; and Charleston, S.C., before ending in New York.

Full Story from the LA Times

Click here for gay travel resources.

 

Holiday Shopping in Las Vegas

Author: , November 28th, 2011

Las vegas Holiday ShoppingIt’s funny, but unless you live in Vegas, it might seem like a strange idea to do your Holiday shopping there. But when you think of the sparkling lights and the razzle-dazzle of your surroundings, it oddly seems quite fitting. Not to mention, you can practically get anything on your shopping list from the variety of shopping sites on the Strip and beyond.

The added bonus is you get to have some Vegas fun while you’re at it since the shops are generally smack dab in the middle of all the action. Don’t let that intimidate you, though, because some of the best stores have homes in Vegas from Alexander McQueen to Louis Vuitton. For less pricey options, you can also find mall staples like H&M and Lucky as well.

Crystals

Let’s start with the fancy stuff. The new City Center is the upscale section of the Las Vegas Strip with hotels like The Cosmopolitan and Vdara rising into the sky attracting visitors that have a few dollars to spend. So it’s no surprise that there would be a high-end shopping experience just waiting for guests directly behind these destinations. Named Crystals, this 500,000 square foot retail and dining center features such stores as Hermes, Christian Dior, Roberto Cavalli and Tiffany and Co. It also boasts retailers who have opened their very first stores including such favorites as Tom Ford, Miu Miu, and Paul Smith. While you’re there you can also take in a variety of exclusive restaurants including Eva Longoria Parker’s Beso.

Full Story from Edge Boston

Click here for gay travel resources in Nevada.

 

Porto for Americans

Author: , November 28th, 2011
by Yvonne, Gaia Apartment, Porto, Portugal
Email Yvonne | Visit the Gaia Apartment Website

Visit the Purple Roofs Portugal page

 Porto, Portugal

Porto, PortugalPorto is a city in Portugal. Portugal is a country in Europe. Europe is a continent across the Atlantic Ocean from the USA. The Atlantic Ocean is a big wet thing you fall into if you go to Atlantic City and keep walking East.

America has never been in a war with Portugal. Portugal doesn’t have any oil.
Porto is not pronounced “poor-dough”, it is pronounced “port-oh”, with a T sound in the middle, like the sound a clock makes when it’s ticking.

Porto, PortugalThe drink port is named after Porto. Port can only be called port if it was made in the Porto region of Portugal, in the same way that champagne can only be called champagne if it was made in the Champagne region of France, and in the same way that a Californian Zinfandel can only be called Californian if it makes you vomit until you pass out the morning after you drink it.

A really cool thing to do when you visit Porto is to go on a tour of the Port cellars and enjoy the free tastings.

Porto, PortugalPorto is really made up of two cities, everything on the north bank of the river is Porto and everything on the south bank is Gaia. The Ancient Romans founded a port here called Cale (which is the ancient form of ‘Gaia’) and thus the area was called Portus-Cale, which became Portu-gal, and gave its name to the country. This all happened a long long time ago, in your terms think of it as just after Jesus died and just before Joan Rivers was born.

Porto and Gaia are separated by six bridges. Two of these were designed by Eiffel, the guy that made that tower in France. The most famous, built by his best apprentice, is called the Luis I Bridge. A seventh bridge is planned which will be designed by Donald Trump and built by John Rich.

Porto has so many things to do and see – for example the amazing 12th Century cathedral, the famous Clerigos tower, the Serra do Pilar monastery with its towering presence over the city, the UNESCO world heritage site of the riverside on both banks – the rustic, quaint Porto side and the trendy, lavish Gaia side, the Serralves modern art gallery, the gardens of the Crystal palace, the world famous Santa Catarina shopping street, the Casa da Musica … they are all within 30 minutes walk of each other. Walking is something you do in other countries, Americans, instead of driving.

The idea is that you put one foot in front of the other, and then move the other one forward so that is in front, and so on. It’s good because its environmentally friendly and you don’t need gas so you don’t have to invade any oil rich countries to do it.

Porto has some of the finest restaurants in southern Europe, but for the less food-adventurous, we also have McDonalds.

Check out the fado whilst you’re here. Fado is Portugal’s traditional music, made up mostly of melodic ballads telling heartbreaking stories. Think of it as country music but without the really irritating twangy instruments.

Porto, Portugal

Getting around can be really fun. Porto has a cable car, funicular, trolley buses, metro (tube), tourist buses, segways, boat trips along the river, helicopter tours, tourist little choo choo train things driving around, and real trains that can take you to Lisbon in 2 and a half hours, the beautiful canals of Aveiro in 30 minutes, the beaches of Francelos and Miramar in 10 minutes, or Spain in 2 hours.

Or you could just call a cab!

Porto’s climate is warm nearly all year round but the best months are normally April – early October. What you should really do though is come by in early July, so you can join in the Porto Gay Pride March. You know these European pride marches are super cool, right?

2010 Madrid Pride – 2 million people and a free concert by Kylie Minogue. 2011 Rome Pride – 1 million people and a free concert by Lady Gaga. 2011 Porto Pride – 25 people and an iPhone turned up real loud by the underground car park. There was even a rainbow flag. Awesome.

PS: Gaga, if you could come do the 2012 Pride March, we’d be real grateful. We’ll even let you keep the iPhone.

Gaia Apartment, Porto, PortugalCome see for yourself. We have the best apartment in the whole city. It’s on the 10th (top) floor of a building right by the Luis I bridge. From the east balcony (yeah, we got two balconies, you won’t find another holiday apartment like that in Porto I betcha) you can gaze at the Serra do Pilar, watch the world going by on the Avenida or look out to the mountains beyond. From the West balcony, which is really like 20 floors high because it’s on a hill, you have breathtaking views of the city, river, the port cellars, the cable car and the UNESCO world heritage site.

Oh and we got fibre optic wifi and cable TV so you can still watch Idol while you’re here. Check out our purple roofs listing “Gaia Apartment” or visit us at http://bilyard.co.uk/apartment.

Featured Gay Friendly Accommodations: Portland’s White House B&B, Portland, Oregon

Author: , November 28th, 2011

Periodically we’ll feature one of our properties here to let our readers know about some great gay friendly places to stay.

Gay Friendly Bed and Breakfasts, Hotels, and Vacation Rentals in Portland, Oregon

Portland's White House B&BSituated in Portland’s North East Historic Irvington District, Portland’s White House was built as a summer home in 1911 by Robert Lytle, a wealthy lumber baron. The house was billed as the most expensive home built in the district for the period.

This Greek Revival Mansion boasts a lifestyle of past years with 14 massive columns, circular drive and fountain to greet you. Enjoy the advantages of the neighborhood to jog, walk, and shop tax free at fabulous boutiques and Lloyd Center. The Pearl District, NW 23rd Avenue Shops, The International Rose Test Gardens, Japanese gardens, Portland Art Museum, Classical Chinese Gardens, Pittock Mansion, Washington Park are only minutes away. Wine Country, Mt. St. Helens, Mt. Hood, the Oregon Coast, the Oregon Gardens and the Columbia Gorge are wonderful day trips.

Summer days show impressive hanging baskets and wonderful flowers to warm your senses. Enjoy sunny afternoons in Steve’s courtyard gardens along with the occasional hummingbirds. Holidays are grand with the home decorated for the seasons.

Restored to its original splendor by Lanning and Steve with sparkling European Chandeliers, formal linened Dining Room, and Large Parlor with grand piano, sweeping staircase, magnificent leaded glass windows, gilt-gold ceilings, Trompe loiel and Grand Ballroom. Extensive collections of European and Continental Porcelains, 18th and 19th Century oil paintings.

See the Portland’s White House B&B Expanded Listing on Purple Roofs Here

India Celebrates Gay Pride

Author: , November 28th, 2011

India Gay PrideTwo of India’s largest cities held Pride events this weekend, with organisers saying it was a chance to “rejoice that we are here and will always be here”.

The organisers of Bangalore Pride also said they hoped the country’s Supreme Court would uphold the 2009 ruling which determined that laws against homosexuality violated the constitution.

In a statement, they called for the state to provide public services to the LGBT community without discrimination, especially to the transgender community with regard to voter IDs, driving licenses, pensions and old-age homes.

Full Story from Pink News

Click here for gay travel resources in India.

 

Skiing in Vermont

Author: , November 28th, 2011

Vermont SkiingThe holidays make December all the more enticing in Vermont’s snowy mountains with festivals, events and good natured cheer emanating from the resorts. Here is a sampling of some of the resorts’ holiday packages, events and deals.

Holidays at Stratton are Spectacular: Enjoy traditional celebrations like the Gobble Gobble Wobble 5K, feasting and fireworks and partake in events you won’t find anywhere else, such as Snowboard Celebration Week.

Jay Peak Resort Invents Weather-Proof Ski Vacation: The team at Jay Peak Resort has invented a weather-proof winter vacation for your holiday pleasure. Using a quarter of a billion dollar investment, the resort began working on the innovation three years ago.

Full Story from Edge Boston

Click here for gay travel resources in Vermont.

 

Featured Gay Friendly Accommodations: Copacabana Panorama, Rio de Janeiro

Author: , November 28th, 2011

Periodically we’ll feature one of our properties here to let our readers know about some great gay friendly places to stay.

Gay Friendly Brazil Bed and Breakfasts, Hotels, and Vacation Rentals

Copacabana Panorama, BrazilThis beachfront condominium offers one of Rio’s – and the world’s – most famous and spectacular views.

You’ll have a stunning vista — including all of Copacabana Beach, with islands jutting up from the sea, and Sugarloaf Mountain.

The sands of world-renowned Copacabana Beach are at your feet. Or you may prefer a five minute walk to Ipanema, with perhaps the best gay beach on the planet.

Within two blocks you’ll find some of Rio’s most exciting gay bars, and nightclubs, including Le Boy, and Le Girl!

See the Copacabana Panorama Expanded Listing on Purple Roofs Here