Gay Tokyo – The Hornet

Author: , January 19th, 2018

gay Tokyo

Tokyo is an extraordinary place — where else can you find ancient shrines and temples hidden within one of the world’s most modern city? The host of 2020 Summer Olympics, that’s where. Tokyo is all about the hustle and bustle, and so is Gay Tokyo. For the first time visitor, Tokyo can be overwhelming with its bright lights, tall skyscrapers and massive crowds.

But as busy as it is, there’s much to explore — ancient history, the freshest and most beautifully prepared food and, of course, the Tokyo nightlife. From its high energy clubs to the cozy dive bars, it’s easy to party till dawn.

And if that weren’t enough, Japan is one of the gay rights leaders in Asia. Even though Japanese culture is typically conservative with strict social norms, Japan (along with Taiwan) is one of the few Asian countries genuinely accepting of its gay communities. An increasing number of districts across Japan have legalized gay civil unions. Two of them are in Tokyo: Shibuya and Setagaya. With this progressive attitude, Tokyo is a top gay destination.

By Charles Thompson-Wang – Full Story at The Hornet

Queer Tokyo – Passport Magazine

Author: , November 3rd, 2017
Queer Tokyo

Photo by CASSIDY DUHON PHOTOGRAPHY

As the city gears up to host the 2020 Summer Olympics, new relationships are being constructed between East and West, gay and straight, old and new. These new dynamics are exciting, and the energy is palpable. A few years ago, I went on an international marathon tour. You can learn a lot about a city from how it cheers on its runners. Bostonians handed out plates of oranges and shouted positive encouragements. Tokyoites offered hand-carved chocolates and homemade sushi, and bowed to the runners.

Gay Tokyo offers something unique and different from many other big cities. In Tokyo, the extremely ancient meets the extremely modern, and those juxtapositions play out in everyday life. Photographer Cassidy DuHon and I visited Tokyo earlier this year. During our week there, we met with LGBT rights activists, male geishas, and Japanese drag queens. We sought out the newest luxury hotels and spas, the most popular gay bars, and the freshest slices of sashimi.

Some people say that Tokyo is similar to Taipei or Seoul. On the surface, it may look so, but scratch below the kimono and you quickly find tastes, sights, and sounds in Tokyo that you can’t find anywhere else in the world.

From the moment I boarded the plane to Tokyo from Washington, D.C., the All Nippon Airways (www.fly-ana.com) staff only spoke to me with smiles. At some point I had to remind myself that I didn’t always have to smile back. Auspiciously, I turned on our inflight entertainment to find an LGBT movie called Close-Knit, which tells the story of a Japanese transgender woman and the relationship she builds with her boyfriend’s niece. It’s beautifully directed and includes an emotional scene where the heroine of the story burns 108 colorful wool-knit penises on the beach, symbolically breaking from her former male identity.

By Allister Chang – Full Story at Passport

The Best Sushi in Tokyo – Nomadic Boys

Author: , July 18th, 2016

Sushi in Tokyo

When you first think of Japanese cuisine, sushi is probably the first thing that comes to mind. Tokyo is one of the best places in the world for an intense sushi #foodporn experience, mainly as a result of having the world’s largest fish market. We set out to discover some of the places to enjoy the best sushi in Tokyo and also stumbled on a few more obscure discoveries.

WHAT IS SUSHI?

Sushi is raw fish, sliced into small pieces and served on cooked vinegared rice. When it’s served without the rice it’s called sashimi. Sushi literally means, sour tasting in Japanese and comes from the old tradition of preserving raw fish by fermenting it by wrapping it in soured fermenting rice. The fish proteins are then broken down via the fermentation.

WHERE TO EAT THE BEST SUSHI IN TOKYO? – THE TSUKIJI FISH MARKET!

Tsukiji is famous for being the largest fish market in the world. Daily auctions start from 4am, drawing huge crowds. This is serious fish business. The most expensive fish (222kg of bluefin tuna) was sold here for $1.8m (155.4 million yen) on 5 January 2013.

By Stefan Arestis – Full Story at the Nomadic Boys

Gay Tokyo – The Nomadic Boys

Author: , July 8th, 2016

Nomadic Boys - Gay Tokyo

Japan is one of the leaders of gay rights in Asia.

Gay TokyoSurprising isn’t it? Japanese society is so regimented, conservative, with strict social norms and little room for acceptance for anything different.

Despite this, Japan (along with Taiwan) is one of the few countries in Asia which has truly started to accept and protect its gay community to the point where it’s opened the door to gay civil unions.

More and more districts across Japan are legalising gay civil unions, two of them in Tokyo: Shibuya and Setagaya. So what better time to come visit the city as a gay couple? A very patient (unmarried) Stefan secretly hoping this could be THE moment…

Tokyo itself is massive, made up of 23 wards, each governed as a separate city and inhabited by over 9 million people. Statistically that’s just under 1 million gays waiting to welcome you.

Gay Tokyo is mainly congregated in Shinjuku’s Ni-chome (Area 2) where all the action happens. We enjoyed our time there so much that we decided to write our LGBT travel guide to Japan’s capital city.

By Stefan Arestis – Full Story at the Nomadic Boys

ANA Business Class Review: Tokyo Haneda to London – Nomadic Boys

Author: , May 19th, 2016

Stefan Nomadic Boys

The very sweet Japanese cabin crew girl onboard our ANA business class flight from Tokyo to London giggled at this proud Frenchman as he pouted fiercely, preparing to tuck into his beef steak fillet and Aomori black garlic confit.

Stefan also looked on in a fit of giggles as Sebastien so effortlessly settled into his ANA business class experience. And wouldn’t you? All Nippon Airways (ANA), Japan’s largest airline, is not only recognised as one of the seven 5-star Airlines by Skytrax, its business class was rated as the fourth best in the world at the 2015 World Airline Awards.

The accolades don’t stop there: in the same year, ANA’s business class was also highly rated for its seats, airline staff, catering and comfort amenities.

By Stefan Arestis – Full Story at the Nomadic Boys

Geisha Makeover in Tokyo – Nomadic Boys

Author: , May 14th, 2016

Geisha Makeover

“As Sayuri was standing beneath the Cherry tree, speaking to the one man she loved but could not have, a sprinkle of delicate pale pink petals fell upon them like snow…”

At this point, Sebastien GRABBED the remote control, interrupting the most beautiful moment of Memoirs of a Geisha to declare: “STEFAN! One day, we too, will become geisha!”

Fast forward a few years and we find ourselves in the unassuming Studio Geisha Cafe in Morishita, suburbia Tokyo, ready for our own Geisha makeover and experience of a lifetime.

“50% of our customers are in fact Japanese (mainly heterosexual) men who simply want to transform into something completely different”. Michiru, a former model/actress, set up the Studio Geisha Cafe with her husband to provide people the chance to live out their dream. She’s used to Japanese men who want to be transformed and we were fortunate to be her first foreign male geisha makeover.

By Stefan Arestis – Full Story at the Nomadic Boys

City Sundays: Tokyo

Author: , August 30th, 2015

City Sundays - Tokyo

Hey all,

We’re launching a new weekly series on the blog and our Facebook travel groups – City Sundays. Each week we’ll select a different LGBT friendly city to talk about, and we’ll invite our innkeeper and travel agent/tour operator friends to come talk with us about it as well.

From Wikipedia:

Tokyo is one of the 47 prefectures of Japan,[6] and is both the capital and largest city of Japan. The Greater Tokyo Area is the most populous metropolitan area in the world.[7] It is the seat of the Emperor of Japan and the Japanese government. Tokyo is in the Kantō region on the southeastern side of the main island Honshu and includes the Izu Islands and Ogasawara Islands.[8] Formerly known as Edo, it has been the de facto seat of government since 1603 when Shogun Tokugawa Ieyasu made the city his headquarters. It officially became the capital after Emperor Meiji moved his seat to the city from the old capital of Kyoto in 1868

Have you ever been? What did you do while you were there?

Do you wanna go?

Let’s chat! Join the conversation here:

Gay (Men) Travelers: Gay Travel Club
Lesbian Travelers: Lesbian Travel Club
Transgender Travelers: Transgender Travel Club
Bisexual Travelers: Bi Travel Club
LGBT Families: LGBT Families Travel Club

Check out our Tokyp articles on the blog here:

http://purpleroofs.com/gay-travel-blog/?s=tokyo

What’s New in Tokyo

Author: , March 8th, 2015

Japan Gay TravelJapan’s vibrant, spirited, and stimulating capital, Tokyo, is famously a city that never sleeps, but tonight it’s taking a gentle nap. My friend Mike and I wander the streets of Ginza, a renowned shopping district normally flooded with pedestrians on a Saturday night, though there’s nary a soul in sight. A handful of locals hugging each other tightly rush to a cab as the heavens above unleash a spatter of rain-drops. It happens that we arrived on the eve of Super Typhoon Phanfone, which was hot on the heels of our flight from Los Angeles. A Super Typhoon is like a tropical storm on steroids, and, already, we knew it would wreak havoc on our vacation.

But, as it turns out, Tokyo is a resilient city. After a huge blow from the recession that lasted six strong years, and a fatal tsunami up north that also affected Tokyo’s economy, the city known for its sparkle and charm finally said enough. It took reign of its economy, opened its first hotel since the recession, and banged out myriad new attractions. The typhoon, interestingly, lasted only one full day; chased away by the famous rising sun that now gleamed over the city. Tokyo had unabashedly emerged from its power nap, fully recharged, and whole-heartedly com- mitted to its agenda of returning to its iconic splendor.

Home to a population upward of 14 million, Tokyo, one of the largest cities in the world, is wildly progressive with emerging neighborhoods, a forward-thinking sensibility, and a gay scene that’s more welcoming to visitors than in years past. With the economy now in hyper-drive, and businesses and attractions opening seemingly every day, visitors are flocking here in record numbers.

By Jimmy Im – Full Story at Passport

What’s New in Tokyo

Author: , March 1st, 2015

Tokyo-2020-194x300Japan’s vibrant, spirited, and stimulating capital, Tokyo, is famously a city that never sleeps, but tonight it’s taking a gentle nap. My friend Mike and I wander the streets of Ginza, a renowned shopping district normally flooded with pedestrians on a Saturday night, though there’s nary a soul in sight. A handful of locals hugging each other tightly rush to a cab as the heavens above unleash a spatter of rain-drops. It happens that we arrived on the eve of Super Typhoon Phanfone, which was hot on the heels of our flight from Los Angeles. A Super Typhoon is like a tropical storm on steroids, and, already, we knew it would wreak havoc on our vacation.

But, as it turns out, Tokyo is a resilient city. After a huge blow from the recession that lasted six strong years, and a fatal tsunami up north that also affected Tokyo’s economy, the city known for its sparkle and charm finally said enough. It took reign of its economy, opened its first hotel since the recession, and banged out myriad new attractions. The typhoon, interestingly, lasted only one full day; chased away by the famous rising sun that now gleamed over the city. Tokyo had unabashedly emerged from its power nap, fully recharged, and whole-heartedly com- mitted to its agenda of returning to its iconic splendor.

By Jimmy Im – Full Story at Passport Magazine

Japan Working to Attract LGBT Tourism

Author: , February 27th, 2015

JapanTo many, Japan may seem like one big sophisticated high-tech metropolis of the future when images of flashy Tokyo fly across your screens. But its LGBT rights movement remains a work in progress.

After a few years away from the International Gay and Lesbian Travel Association (IGLTA), Japan will be attending the organization’s annual meeting this year in Los Angeles and looking into attracting more LGBT tourists. Yuki Tanaka, the executive director of the Japan National Tourism Organization, said that the initiative is still in its fledgling stages, but it’s making progress. “Tokyo and Kyoto are the most popular,” she said, “people like the modern design of Japan, the high-end hotels, and the nightlife.”

Similar to the United States, it’s the major cities — such as Tokyo and Kyoto — where LGBT rights are making their first advances. In Japan, couples renting houses or apartments need some sort of authorization, and a marriage certificate is usually used. But since gay couples can’t get married in Japan, it was difficult for them to rent property when the owner could deny them.

By Dennis Hinzmann – Full Story at Out Magazine