NY: Queens Film Festival Releases Gay Film Line-Up

Author: , February 23rd, 2012

Queens World Film FestivalQueer films exist, just as do queer books and queer music. We have a press release regarding the LGBT line up from the Queens World Film Festival that may interest some of our readers. Here is the press release:

The 2nd Annual Queens World Film Festival will return on March 1 – 4 opening at the Museum of the Moving Image with an impressive line]up of films including the world premiere of Queen an exquisite LGBT short film by a young filmmaker/actor from Los Angeles.

On Saturday, March 3 QWFF will screen an incredible selection of LGBT films including several fine selections from Spain. 2012 marks the first year that LGBT films are eligible to be in competition for awards and prizes on par with other features from the QWFFF program (Award Ceremony Sunday March 4).

Full Story from Lez Get Real

Click here for gay travel resources in New York.

 

How Gay Friendly is St. Petersburg, Russia?

Author: , February 23rd, 2012

St. Petersburg, RussiaGay travel websites herald St. Petersburg as Russia’s most gay-friendly city. According to gaytravel.com, “St. Petersburg is to Moscow what San Francisco is to New York. Culture and nightlife are explosive yet there’s a sense that people aren’t in nearly as big a hurry.”

That statement was arguably true up until February 8, 2012, the date when St. Petersburg approved a controversial bill that threatens to impose fines of up to $16,700 for the “promotion of homosexuality.”

The bill–if signed in to law by St. Petersburg’s mayor–will criminalize reading, writing, speaking or reporting on anything related tao gay, lesbian bi or trans people, and will make illegal almost all activity related to defending or promoting lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered (LGBT) equality. “Pride parades, literature, or NGOs that openly serve LGBT people will be wiped out, or pushed underground,” said leading global lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered rights group AllOut.org.

Full Story from eTurboNews

Click here for gay travel resources in Russia.

 

When Traveling, Be Aware of Transaction Fees and Currency Exchange Issues

Author: , February 23rd, 2012

Money ExchangeOn my very first trip to Europe (from the US) I was told to just take my credit card and use it as my currency – and use local ATM’s if I wanted cash out. I was told I would get the best rate. True. But no one told me I was also going to get slapped with a 3% charge on very transaction! (once called a currency conversion fee).

If you’re planning a foreign trip, double-check with your credit card issuers to find out how much using your credit and debit cards will cost you: Many have increased their foreign transaction fees, though some, in a move to attract rewards-hungry consumers, have recently decided to buck the trend and drop the fees.- as of 2012.

Full Story from the New Gay Travel Guide

Click here for gay travel resources.

 

Rio de Janeiro’s Carnival a Big Draw for Gay Travelers

Author: , February 23rd, 2012

Rio de JaneiroIt took Dutch tourist Adriaan little time after landing in Rio to pick out his favorite spot during Carnival, the five-day party that officially ended Wednesday.

A 35-year-old graphic designer, he found his niche at the gay meeting point on Ipanema beach, where palm fronds and rainbow flags wave in the balmy ocean breeze, and tanned, well-muscled young men strut about in swim suits that reveal more than they conceal. Conversation failed to distract the tall, blond visitor from his careful perusal of the bathers rinsing off salt water at an open-air shower in a ritual that was equal parts bathing and public display of bodies toned to perfection.

“This is just beautiful,” he said while sitting on the beach in the gayest neighborhood of a city routinely ranked as a top destination for gay tourists.

Full Story from ABC News

Click here for gay travel resources in Brazil.

 

Featured Gay Friendly Accommodations: Cobtree Vacation Rental Resort, Geneva, New York

Author: , February 23rd, 2012

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

Cobtree Vacation Rental resort, Finger Lakes, New YorkWelcome to the Cobtree Vacation Rental Resort, in the beautiful Finger Lakes Region of Upstate New York. Our central New York resort was originally opened in 2003, and has become one of the premier self-catering vacation rental destinations in New York, just five hours by car from New York City.

Our Finger Lakes resort is also just two hours from the Canadian border and Niagara Falls, and Toronto is only three hours from here.

Our seven accommodations here at Cobtree look out over Seneca Lake, the largest of New York’s Finger Lakes. We’re also on the Seneca Lake wine trail, with more than fifty wineries around the lake, as well as many world class restaurants.

See the Cobtree Vacation Rental Resort Expanded Listing on Purple Roofs Here

Gay Friendly Bed and Breakfasts, Hotels, and Vacation Rentals in the Finger Lakes Region

Still Time for Snowboarding in Aspen

Author: , February 23rd, 2012

Winter Sports at AspenFebruary, March and often April are perfect months to get in those last-minute snowboarding and ski trips. With winter travel rates dropping as the season progresses, why not book that last-minute trip? Of particular interest to many travelers every winter is Aspen, Colo. This particular ski locale is close to the city, making transportation easy without a rental car.

On this Sole Journey, we will review Aspen. I will pay specific attention to the local businesses and offer cost-effective ways to visit the city, whether on a budget or not! The area is practically a winter paradise and offers many different ski and snowboarding adventures in regards to price. So, let’s hit the slopes and have some fun.

Every winter thousands flock to the Rocky Mountains in search of that perfect “powder.” Many from the Northeastern United States might say “Pow-dah” on the slopes – nonetheless they come in droves to experience these Western mountains. Those of us who live in California are particularly lucky. We live only a few flight hours away from many of the best slopes in America.

Full Story from SDGLN

Click here for gay travel resources in Aspen.

 

UN Releases New Gay Travel Report

Author: , February 23rd, 2012

Rainbow FlagA benchmark affiliate report has been published by the United Nations World Tourism Association in partnership with the International Gay & Lesbian Travel Association. The Global Report on LGBT tourism found destinations offering a tolerant culture were reaping the benefits of increased travel to – and spend by – gay travellers.

The report cautioned against making assumptions about this market, as sexuality is not necessarily an indicator of socio-economic status or leisure choices.

Although difficult to accurately measure the impact of gay tourism, sources in the USA attribute five per cent of tourism spend to the LGBT market.

Full Story from Breaking Travel News

Click here for gay travel resources.

 

Gay Travel Helps the Cape Town Economy

Author: , February 23rd, 2012

CAPE Town is scoring economic gains from international gay travellers, who constitute up to 12 percent of the city’s tourists, says a report.

The city is loved by the Lesbians, Gays, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) travellers from Europe and the US for its matchless beauty, diverse lifestyle, colourful people and large local gay population.

The report was published last month by the UN World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) in partnership with the International Gay and Lesbian Travel Association. The report cautioned against making assumptions about this market, as sexuality is not necessarily an indicator of socio-economic status or leisure choices.

Full Story from the Cape Times

Click here for gay travel resources in Cape Town.

New Orleans: A New Generation at Mardi Gras

Author: , February 23rd, 2012

Mardi Gras in New OrleansA new generation of parades is hitting the streets of New Orleans for Mardi Gras, and they’re throwing away old traditions of big, glitzy floats and celebrity kings and queens for smaller, greener and sometimes naughtier floats with a hipster sensibility.

These smaller krewes, as the parades or marching groups are called, draw on the talents of local artists and satirize everything from politics to local customs.

One float, labeled “Benz Over,” spoofed the recent sale of naming rights for the Superdome to Mercedes-Benz. The float carried a small replica of the Dome with large buttocks for a roof. Another krewe’s floats are set atop people-powered adult tricycles fashioned from material salvaged after Hurricane Katrina.

Full Story from Edge Boston

Click here for gay travel resources in Louisiana.

 

Gay Travel: Out and About in Houston

Author: , February 23rd, 2012

by Eyal Feldman, owner of Boy Butter Lubricants.

Gay Houston TravelAfter my first trip to America’s fourth largest city, I found it to be a lively and stylish cosmopolitan town that effortlessly blends Western and Southern heritage and style. Houston has been one of America’s great boomtowns and is recognized worldwide for its energy industry—particularly for oil and natural gas—as well as for biomedical research and aeronautics.
The energy of the city is not just based in petroleum, but the warm and friendly people who lend their own kind of energy make it a fun place to hang and make some new friends.

Houston acts as a cultural capital bridging the South and Southwest, with some of the best museums in the country. Cultural highlights include the Menil Collection, with works by Warhol, Leger, and Picasso and is within walking distance of the Rothko Chapel. The Chapel contains 14 large-scale Mark Rothko paintings and a peaceful reflecting pool and plaza; and the Byzantine Fresco Chapel, which showcases two 13th-century frescoes rescued from war-torn Cyprus.

Not far from there is The Museum of Natural Science, with tons of educational exhibits that boasts a 25,000 square foot rainforest with butterfly garden, a 3-D IMAX theatre and a planetarium.

The downtown area is a trendy district of restaurants, clubs, shops, condos, hip hotels, and an architecturally stunning baseball stadium.  Other central Houston neighborhoods, including gay-popular Montrose and up-and-coming Midtown area are definite places to visit and spend some time. A trip here would not be complete without visiting The Galleria, the biggest shopping mall in Texas, is a must do. Just make sure you remember where you parked cause it is really really big and you can get really lost.

The Houston gay scene is centered in Montrose, an attractive neighborhood a couple of miles southwest of downtown, with a mix of early 20th-century homes and cottages and newer pockets of condos and apartments. The gayborhood’s epicenter is where Westheimer Road crosses Montrose Boulevard, and you’re within walking distance of countless gay bars and gay-friendly restaurants.

You can purchase a drink or two then if things go well maybe some Boy Butter lubricants, which you can even find at the local Walgreens pharmacy. There is a place in my heart for Houston and I can easily find myself going back again and again.