Gay Ski Week News for Winter 2013-14

Author: , December 18th, 2013

SkiingLots of gay ski week news this week as the season arrives. Here’s a sampling of what’s going on around the world:

CANADA, BC: Whistler Jan 26-Mar 5
GayWhistler’s WinterPRIDE Gay Ski Week is celebrating its 22nd year Jan. 26-Feb. 2nd, 2014 and you are invited to be part of this exciting festival. WinterPRIDE is one of the world’s leading mountain festivals that celebrates diversity and has been named one of the top Gay Ski Weeks by editors, travel writers and guests from around the planet. Situated just 120KM (75 miles) North of Vancouver, BC it is easy to get to this Olympic World Class Mountain resort with over 8,171 acres of pure skiing/riding bliss.
full story

Switzerland: Arosa Jan 12-19
To stay here is to experience winter at its most beautiful. Guests encounter genuine, charming hospitality everywhere in Arosa. The impressive backdrop is the proud mountain landscape of Graubünden. Alpine and cross-country skiing, curling and figure skating are all on offer here, not forgetting long rambles on 40 kilometers of popular winter paths for folks who do not have the compulsion to rush downhill on skis or snowboards.
full story

USA, CO: Aspen Jan 12-19
Aspen Gay Ski Week is a week-long LGBTQ winter event held in January each year. Aspen is located in the heart of the Rocky Mountains just hours from Denver by car and 30 minutes by plane into Aspen Airport.
full story

USA, VT: Stowe Jan 22-26
Join hundreds of GLBTQ enthusiasts from across the country and beyond for 5 days of Skiing, Snow boarding, Cross Country, Snow Shoeing, Dance Parties, Entertainment, Giant Pool Party. Shopping, Spas, Hot Tubs and more.
full story

Purple Roofs Gay Travel Newsletter 12/14/13

Author: , December 14th, 2013

Mark and ScottWelcome to the Purple Roofs gay travel newsletter.

Our articles section now has four parts – local news,
general interest, travel event news (including upcoming events and reviews and photos of past events), and finally sweepstakes and contests.

We’ve got lots of other great stuff for you this month, too – including a bunch of feature articles on Holiday Shopping in San Francisco, Montreal’s Gay Village, the Hidden Italy; and more.

And we’re featuring a number of other gay travel articles from around the world.

You’ll also find some great accommodation specials and discounts, tons of upcoming gay travel events, and much more.

Casa K - Puerto VallartaCasa K: The Hidden One – Old Town Puerto Vallarta


The El Escondido, known as the “Hidden One,” is a beautiful complex located on a gentle hill just above Olas Altas street in Puerto Vallarta.

Casa K, corner of paradise. Casa K is a large two-bedroom (1240 sqft) artistically decorated vacation condo furnished with both modern and Mexican design touches.

Visit The Casa K Expanded Listing Here

Our Featured Articles This Month:


Branson ElvisTRAVELING IN OUR FABULOUS GAY WORLD: Our Wonderful Traveling in 2013
by Don & Ray
Our first trip this year was a driving trip down to New Orleans or “NOLA” as it is called by travelers from all over the world. If you only visit there for the restaurants and bars you would be well pleased however there are so many other things to see and do in the city. They have their share of wonderful museums as well as historical and architectual places to visit. The French Quarters is where most people head to first. One of our favorite restaurants is STELLA, located at 1032 Chartres in the French Quarters. We had their Chef’s 7 course tasting dinner with wine pairing. You will need to take a minimum of two hours to enjoy this and it is worth every penny.
Full Story

Xmas_TreetOh Tannenbaum
by Robert Saldarini, Diversity Rules Magazine
Regardless if you celebrate Christmas or respectfully decline, few can dispute the glamor of the Christmas tree. In actuality, the tree predates Christianity and was an intimate part of winter festivals. Few know that celebrating Christmas was viewed as pagan and outlawed in the newly found settlement of Boston; whereby, a fine was levied if one made merry. Even after the Revolutionary War, Congress sat in session on the 25th of December. Time past and in 1870 America declared Christmas a National holiday. So, let’s look beyond the political correctness and religion of late December and instead admire the art of the Christmas tree.
Full Story

Montreal Le VillageCANADA, QUEBEC: Montreal’s Le Village
by Laura Brouillette
You know what Kinsey posited — we all have a percentage of gay in us. You may be 50-50, you may be 60-40. Hell, you might even be 98-2! But, he argued, all of us fall in a grey area. And what city knows this better than Montreal, one of the most gay-friendly places in the world. Whether you’re a native Montrealer, or from a small town, all agree that there’s no better place to get your heteroflexible on than in this bilingual metropolis. Full-fledged homo already? Perfect! You’ll feel right at home. And what better place to get your queer on than the Gay Village itself. Now I know this makes it sound like I’m encouraging everyone to hurry up and go make out in a Village cafe bathroom, but trust me, entrepreneurs caught on a long time ago…and bathroom doors are now locked.
Full Story

BolognaITALY: Finding the Hidden Italy
by Diego Donzella, My Hidden Italy
Even if Italy isn’t the most tolerant country regarding same-sex couples, due to the strong influence of the Vatican, it has grown to accept its gay and lesbian citizens, especially over the past few decades. Homosexuality has been legal here since 1889, and the age of consent is 16. It is of course forbidden to have sex in public, and even open displays of affection can be an issue with some officials. No law has been passed to recognize same-sex couples, but in some towns there are registered civil partnerships that give recognition, if no special rights, to gay couples couple. And yet, Italy remains a favorite romantic destination for gay men and lesbians.
Full Story

Castro Christmas TreeUSA, CALIFORNIA: San Francisco Shopping for the Holidays 2013
by Scott & Mark
San Francisco is always a great place to visit, but it’s especially magical during the Holiday Season. While there’s no snow, the Christmas decorations come out, it seems like there’s music on every corner, and holiday cheer abounds. We took our annual holiday shopping trip in The City last week, to head down to The City to see what this holiday season had to offer. The weather was cold (and wet the first night) this year – but after the rain passed on Friday, we had two beautiful, sunny days. You’ll find many of our favorites here – Union Square, Union Street, The Castro, The Embarcadero/Ferry Building, and Hayes Valley.
Full Story


We also scour the web to bring you all the gay travel news we can find. You can see these posts on a daily basis at http://www.purpleroofs.com/gay-travel-blog, or sign up for our RSS feed. Here are some of our favorites from the last month.

Local Stories:

BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA:
Monday morning and we are back on the road. We head deep into the mountains. The area is breathtaking.
Full Story

CANADA, ONTARIO: Toronto to Host Pride House During Russian Olympics
Toronto is carrying on an Olympic tradition that had its beginnings in Vancouver, but has been outlawed for the Winter Games in Sochi.
Full Story

CHINA: The Great Wall of China in Winter
We all have seen what the Great Wall looks like when the weather is nice, especially in summer.
Full Story

FIJI: Five Free Things to Do in Fiji
With its white sand beaches, tropical climate and relaxed pace, Fiji has rightfully earned a reputation as a South Pacific paradise.
Full Story

FRANCE: Exploring Nice at Night
Dinner last night at Regence private Restaurant at Le Negresco Hotel in Nice, France was just outstanding.
Full Story

FRANCE: Exploring Nice in the Daylight
This is my third time in Nice, and this time I am only for 24 hours, invited by Le Negresco Hotel, on my way to my final destination for the next four days, Cannes.
Full Story

GERMANY: Berlin is a Must-Visit in 2014
Get ready for another one of those anniversaries that might make you feel really old. November 9, 2014 will mark the 25th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall.
Full Story

GERMANY: Cologne, Germany – Cooler Than You Think
Before the weather turned too cold I took a short trip up to visit Cologne (that’s Köln) for the very first time. Having lived in Germany for a little while now (a long while, really), it seemed strange that I hadn’t yet visited.
Full Story

Baden-Baden’s Subtle But Exquisite Beauty
So I’ve been living in Germany for a decent amount of time now and yet the country is still surprising me.
Full Story

INDIA: What Does India’s Sodomy Law Ruling Mean for Gay Travelers?
A ruling of the Indian Supreme court in India could have widespread consequences also for the travel and tourism industry to India.
Full Story

ITALY: Visiting Venice’s Caffe Florian
A must stop and try caffe in Venice, right on Piazza San Marco.
Full Story

ITALY: Venice’s Rialto Bridge and Market
The Rialto Bridge is one of the four bridges along the Grand Canal in Venice, Italy.
Full Story

ITALY: Venice to Block Large Cruise Ships
The Italian government’s recent decision to limit the number of large ships entering Venice through scenic Giudecca Canal early next year – and eventually, prohibit them altogether – may come as a blow to some cruise passengers who have their hearts set on seeing this famous city.
Full Story

SLOVENIA: Visiting Ljubljana
The worst thing about Ljubljana is not having enough time to enjoy its buzzing nightlife.
Full Story

SPAIN: Is Madrid Trying to Shut Down Gay Pride?
Organizers of Madrid’s Gay Pride festival say the city is trying to financially “strangle” the event by imposing excessive fines that will shut it down if they continue.
Full Story

UK, ENGLAND: Why You Should Stay in East London
London is a big, big city and because of that, it can be overwhelming to decide where to stay.
Full Story

UK, ENGLAND: London From Above
You know how sometimes you’re just in the right place at the right time?
Full Story

UK, ENGLAND: UK Christian B&B Owners Lose Appeal to Supreme Court
The Christian guesthouse owners who banned a gay couple from sleeping in a double room has lost their Supreme Court appeal.
Full Story

UK, ENGLAND: 24 Hour Tube Service to Boost Gay London Nghtlife
London Underground has announced that in 2015 parts of the tube network will run 24-hours at the weekends.
Full Story

USA, ARIZONA: Phoenix – Go for the Food
When Twitter and Facebook first began to catch fire, so did food trucks.
Full Story

USA, ARKANSAS: Little Rock – An Improbable Oasis
Little Rock, Arkansas may not show up on most LGBT travelers’ domestic bucket list, but maybe it’s time that bucket got bigger.
Full Story

USA, CALIFORNIA: Los Angeles – Go for the Food
There’s this weirdly unfounded reputation that just about everyone in Los Angeles is vegan and therefore sunbaked Angelenos only feast on the likes of kale and quinoa.
Full Story

USA, CALIFORNIA: Five Unique Holiday Shopping Spots in San Francisco
San Francisco is a world-class shopping city, and everyone from high-end international designers to small independent DIY artisans has a seat at the merch table.
Full Story

USA, CALIFORNIA: Three Great San Francisco Culinary Hot-Spots
San Francisco is more than just tacos and beer; these high-profile eateries show that the City by the Bay can innovate and excite with haute cuisine.
Full Story

USA, FLORIDA: Broward County Aims to Build on Gay Tourism Success
Greater Fort Lauderdale has come a long way since officially rolling out the rainbow carpet to gay and lesbian travelers in 1996. Back then tourism officials spent $35,000 on gay marketing.
Full Story

USA, LOUISIANA: Want to Spend (An Affordable) Christmas in New Orleans?
The one holiday you associate with New Orleans is probably Mardi Gras, for obvious reasons. But three months prior, just as winter is making the rest of the country reach for their snow shovels, another important holiday makes this balmy southern city shine: Christmas.
Full Story

USA, NEW YORK: New York’s Skyline at Night
Do I need to say more? These photos will really make you impulsively buy a ticket right now because New York skyline at night is magical, stunning and romantic!
Full Story

USA, NEW YORK: Visiting the New Harlem
There’s such thing as Italian Renaissance. Or English Renaissance.
Full Story

USA, NEW YORK: Walking in Brooklyn Heights
Brooklyn is one of the five boroughs of New York City, right across downtown Manhattan.
Full Story

USA, TENNESSEE: Affordable Things to Do in the Smoky Mountains
Looking for an easy budget getaway? Tennessee’s Smoky Mountains offer a mix of inexpensive activities and attractions that work for all kinds of travelers, from thrill-seekers and hiking nuts to kids and foodies.
Full Story

USA, UTAH: Visiting Park City
In 2002, the Winter Olympics took place in Salt Lake City, which put the destination in the public’s eye.
Full Story


General Gay Travel News:

Alain and His Rainbow Wig
For some people it me be something as simple and small as an iPod.
Full Story

Travels of Adam’s Favorite Places
Where did you go on your last holiday? This October, I travelled around south-western Germany for two weeks.
Full Story

Budget Travel Destinations for 2014
Shermans Travel Blog has compiled a list of their top ten affordable travel destinations for next year.
Full Story


Gay Event Reviews:

None this week


Upcoming Event News:

AUSTRALIA: Bear Essentials 18 Coming to Sydney in February
(Feb 1-Mar 2) Bear Essentials 18 Festival – Bear Essentials is an internationally recognized and respected bear festival organized and delivered by the Harbour City Bears. It brings together the best of our local bear culture and offers it to the world in one of the best cities in the world, Sydney.
Full Story

ITALY: Gay Film Festival Starts in Naples on December 18th
(Dec 18) Founded in 2008, OMOVIES is the Festival of Cinema Gay and Questioning of the city of Naples, sponsored by the Social Promotion of Ken NGO, which has as its goal the overcoming of prejudice against LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender).
Full Story

North American Gay Ski Weeks in 2014
Gay ski weeks used to be edgy, new things. Starting with Aspen 36 years ago (and still the first of the season), they’ve added annually. This season, the newest event will turn 4, while most have more than 10 years under their belts.
Full Story

USA, COLORADO: Aspen Gay Ski Week Returning In January
(Jan 12-19) Aspen Gay Ski Week, the nation’s largest and oldest gay ski event, returns for its 37th year from Jan. 12 – 19, 2014, along with presenting sponsor, Bud Light.
Full Story


Sweepstakes:

AUSTRALIA: Sydney Mardi Gras Announces 2014 Calendar
(Feb 9-Mar )The Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras festival is poised to deliver a kaleidoscope of colorful experiences in 2014, with a jam-packed program of cultural and community events running from Sunday 9 February through to Sunday 2 March, 2014.
Full Story

COSTA RICA: Win a Trip to Costa Rica With Detours
Detours, a gay adventure travel company based out of Calgary, Canada, is currently giving away 1 of their 3 international trips to Costa Rica, Thailand or Greece on their website in a raffle based contest.
Full Story

SWEDEN: Win a Same Sex Wedding at Sweden’s Ice Hotel
To celebrate the UK’s Marriage (Same-sex) Act finally coming into law in 2014, ICEHOTEL in partnership with Discover-the-World and VisitSweden UK are offering same-sex couples a once in a lifetime, truly intimate, personalised wedding at the ICEHOTEL in Sweden.
Full Story

USVI: Win Five Nights in the US Virgin Islands at Sand Castle on the Beach
(Apr 1) Sand Castle On The Beach Resort welcomes you and your loved ones to vacation in a beautiful, tropical environment. Beachfront on the Caribbean Sea, enjoy the newly added amenities on this special property. There are two pools on site – one beachfront, the other clothing optional.
Full Story

Gay Travel Events – The List:


Check out our new events list, where we list gay events around the world – http://www.purpleroofs.com/gay-travel-events.html.

Sign Up for Our Gay Travel Sweepstakes


Caribbean Sweepstakes: We’re teaming up with the beautiful Sand Castle on the Beach in the US Virgin Islands (http://www.sandcastleonthebeach.com/) to give away 5 nights in the Caribbean.
http://www.purpleroofs.com/contest.html

Check Out Our Special Offer Section


Our innkeepers and travel agents offer exclusive specials to travelers who find them on Purple Roofs. This month, we have 17 Accommodation/Tour offers listed in 16 countries and regions around the world! No membership required.
http://www.purpleroofs.com/lateavailability.html

Visit Our Other Websites:


Gayapolis: Personals, daily news, and a great gay and lesbian directory.
http://www.gayapolis.com

Mi Casa Su Casa: Our home trade network – join for just $75 for 5 years.
http://www.gayhometrade.com

Gay Realty Network: Real estate professionals around the world.
http://www.gayrealtynetwork.com

Purple Unions: Gay friendly wedding vendors around the world.
http://www.purpleunions.com

Find Us On Twitter:

We have a Twitter account – follow us at http://twitter.com/purpleroofs.

Find Us On Facebook:


We have a Facebook page too – like us at http://www.facebook.com/purpleroofs.

Find Us On Google+:


We have a Google+ page as well – follow us at https://plus.google.com/105511413517642023561/posts.

Find Us On Pinterest:


And we have a Pinterest board as well – follow us at https://pinterest.com/gayapolis/purple-roofs/.

Marriage Equality News:


Also check out Gay Marriage Watch, our daily news blog about gay marriage: We bring you all the news on the fight for gay marriage daily. Join our blog email list by sending a subscription request to info@purpleunions.com. Find the full blog at http://www.purpleunions.com/blog/index.html. You can now also find us on Twitter with regular updates every day at http://www.twitter.com/gaymarriagewatc.

That’s it for this issue – enjoy the newsletter!

Mark & Scott

PurpleRoofs – http://www.purpleroofs.com

PO Box 4666, El Dorado Hills, CA 95762

PS: Wanna sponsor this newsletter and reach over 27,000 people? Email us at wheretostay@purpleroofs.com for details.

TRAVELING IN OUR FABULOUS GAY WORLD: Our Wonderful Traveling in 2013

Author: , December 12th, 2013
Email Donald & Ray | Visit the Gay Travel Guys Website

click any image for full-sized pic

Our first trip this year was a driving trip down to New Orleans or “NOLA” as it is called by travelers from all over the world. If you only visit there for the restaurants and bars you would be well pleased however there are so many other things to see and do in the city.

They have their share of wonderful museums as well as historical and architectual places to visit. The French Quarters is where most people head to first.

One of our favorite restaurants is STELLA, located at 1032 Chartres in the French Quarters. We had their Chef’s 7 course tasting dinner with wine pairing. You will need to take a minimum of two hours to enjoy this and it is worth every penny. Their website is www.restaurantstella.com.

Another of our favorite is OLIVIER’S CREOLE RESTAURANT www.olivierscreole.com and is located at 204 Decatur Street in the French Quarters. It is one of the great restaurant families of New Orleans. The Olivier family comes from a culture known the world over for it’s Creole cuisine. Plus their Pecan Pie is the finest that we have ever had in all of our travels!

Burgundy B&B New OrleansWe stayed at the Burgundy Bed and Breakfast at 2513 Burgundy St., website: www.theburgundy.com. Innkeeper Carl Smith was a very gracious host. It is within walking distance to the French Quarter so you don’t have to fight for a parking space.

There are dozens of bars in NOLA however our very favorite was THE 700 CLUB, Their address is 700 Burgundy Street and their website is: www.700clubneworleans.com. The owner, Matt Giglio KNOWS how to run a business and it shows. Actually he is one of the finest bar owners that we have met in our travels from coast to coast.

In the Spring we traveled to Branson, Missouri which is billed as the “Live Entertainment Capital of the World”. Of course that is the Branson Convention & Visitor’s Center who is saying that. It does have a lot of live entertainment at the different theatre venues. But perhaps it should be bill as the “Live Entertainment Capital of the Midwest”.

They do have a lot of morning, afternoon and evening shows there. Really nothing else to do there. The shows used to be packed solid all of the time however people are not going to Branson as they once did. Most all of the shows are playing to 1/4 or less of their capacity. The “God and Country” shows are really hurting for business.

Branson ElvisOur favorite shows to see were the Red Skelton Show starring Tom Mullica as Red and his partner, Stephen Holmes. Tom does an outstanding job as playing Red Skelton. Three other shows that we really enjoyed were the Joseph Hall Show (Elvis), the Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampede and the Shoji Tabuchi Show. Sadly, most of the other shows were less impressive.

Later we drove to Eureka Springs, Arkansas which is the REAL “Gay Capital of the Midwest”. This wonderful little village is located in the northern part of Arkansas in the mountains. It has been referred to as the “Key West of the Midwest” and it truly is. Most of the businesses are gay owned with over a dozen small gay owned Bed and Breakfast Inns.

Bill in Eureka SpringsFilled with bars, restaurants and wonderful shopping, Eureka Springs is truly a Gay Haven. We always have fun meeting interesting and fun people. Here we enjoyed Bill, the owner of the New Delhi Restaurant which is a Restaurant/Bar that is always packed with people.

We also enjoyed meeting “Mr. Eureka Springs”, Michael Walsh. He truly is a remarkable person and does more than anyone else in the village to promote it. Check out www.outineureka.com.

Las Vegas MayorIn the summer we drove out to Las Vegas for a fun week. How can one not have fun in Las Vegas which offers so much? The new Mayor, Carolyn Goodman welcomed us to the city at her office. The fabulous shows, the dining, the museums, the people… what more can we can we say about Las Vegas? Las Vegas has always been Gay but ever year it gets MORE GAY! and that is a good thing.

And now we are getting ready to drive down to Florida for the month of January where we always stay at the “ultra FABULOUS Grand Resort and Spa, www.grandresort.net.

Happy Holidays to all and have a Fabulous Holiday Season.

Always remember to have fun when traveling, meet new people and talk to everyone!

Donald and RayTRAVELING IN OUR FABULOUS GAY WORLD is written by Donald Pile and Ray Williams, Award-winning, Celebrity travel columnists who write for gay publications from coast to coast (And now legally married). Proud members of the IGLTA. You can email them at gaytravelers@aol.com and visit their website at http://gaytravelersataol.blogspot.com/

Cozy Winter Nights at the Old Parkdale Inn Bed and Breakfast

Author: , December 6th, 2013

It seems like it’s been forever since I’ve written a blog post, for myself or for Purple Roofs.  But now that winter has set in seems like I have more time to reflect and share with you the Hood River Valley, Oregon, and the Old Parkdale Inn Bed and Breakfast.  Just in time for our Cozy Winter Nights Special

We invite you to experience the quiet Winter Months in the Hood River Valley and surrounding forest.  A spectacular B&B experience at the Old Parkdale Inn situated in the abundant beauty of the Hood River Valley with majestic views of Mt Hood.

Parkdale, Oregon, is the halfway spot along the Mt Hood Scenic Byway, and the Old Parkdale Inn B&B is in the heart of this quiet hamlet.  You’ll get a two-night stay for two, Sundays through Thursday through January 30, 2014, for $189.00.  Your deal, valued at $290, includes a hearty breakfast to start your day and the serenity that comes with spending an evening at the Old Parkdale Inn.

Choose any one of our three guest rooms, each with amenities including a private bath, flat-screen satellite TV and DVD player, microwave, coffee maker, refrigerator, and Free wireless Internet.  You may want to relax in your room or in our tranquil gardens.

The Old Parkdale Inn, only 85 miles from Portland on the north slopes of Mt Hood

The Old Parkdale Inn, only 85 miles from Portland on the north slopes of Mt Hood

The Old Parkdale Inn is located on the famous Hood River County Fruit Loop,  perfectly situated to tour the area’s gorgeous farms, wineries and orchards.  Most of the businesses stay open through Christmas but then it gets pretty sleepy up here in the Hood River Valley.  But that’s one of the bonuses of a winter stay.  Should you choose to head outdoors and have a go at an awesome winter sport you’ll enjoy the quiet serenity at the Old Parkdale Inn when you return.

Come mealtime, head for craft beer and a wild rice burger at Solera Brewery, just a few blocks from the inn.  Sorry Folks, they’re closed on Wednesday. Also walking distance from the Inn, Apple Valley BBQ, closed Monday and Tuesday, serves up top-quality meats, amazing side dishes and a hefty dose of small-town hospitality.  Only minutes from the Mt Hood National Forest you can enjoy, depending on your arrival date, to ski Mount Hood Meadows, XC ski or take a hike to Bald Butte or Tamanawas Falls.  Cycling is quite popular and miles and miles of mountain biking trails and scenic forest roads challenge our cycling guests.  Again this year we will have discount lift tickets to both Mt Hood Meadows Ski Resort and Timberline Ski Area.  These ski areas typically open around Thanksgiving.  Pray for snow!

The two-night midweek stay must be booked Sunday through Thursday now and January 30, 2014, for $189.00 and cannot include a Saturday or Friday night.   Stay must be two consecutive nights.

Share this special with your family and friends.  Maybe they’d like to join you for a memorable getaway to the Old Parkdale Inn.

Purple Roofs Guest Blogger:  Mary Pellegrini, owner/innkeeper at the Old Parkdale Inn Bed and Breakfast in the Upper Hood River Valley, Oregon.  We are about an hour and a half east of Portland, Oregon, a scenic drive through the Columbia River Gorge and the Hood River Valley to our B&B at the base of Oregon’s tallest mountain, majestic Mt Hood.

Travel Gift Guide for 2013

Author: , November 23rd, 2013

Christmas GiftsToday’s travelers want to be comfortable, organized and connected. With those themes in mind, here are some gift ideas, starting with suggestions from three folks who travel for a living.

GOPRO AND A POWER STRIP

Brian Stacey, director of new product development for Tauck, the cruise and tour company, says his must-haves include Creative Labs noise-cancelling headphones for air travel ($60), and a GoPro camera, which he describes as “the hottest thing out there” (newest model, HERO3+ Black Edition, $400). The tiny digital camera can go underwater or “attach to pretty much anything – your helmet, arm, leg, canoe” – and take video and photos while you’re moving.

He also loves the Orvis businessman’s backpack ($150-$200). Among the things he stashes in it are a bottle protector from TravelSmith ($24) to bring home wine or olive oil without worrying about spills; and a Belkin power strip ($20). With a power strip, he can charge five gadgets with one hotel room outlet. If he’s traveling internationally, he only needs one adapter.

Authored By Beth J. Harpaz – See the Full Story at Edge Boston

Click here for gay travel resources.

150K March in Buenos Aires Pride

Author: , November 11th, 2013

Argentina - Google Maps

from Google Maps

Massive crowds came out to take part in the 22nd Buenos Aires Gay Pride Parade on Saturday, starting with a group kiss before 150,000 took to the streets.

The parade wound its way through the city’s streets to the Plaza de Mayo for an open air festival and fireworks show.

Many of the signs and speeches at the event referenced Pope Francis I who in his former role of Catholic Archbishop of Buenos Aires had vocally opposed efforts to legalize same-sex marriage in the Latin American nation.

Authored By Andrew Potts – See the Full Story at Gay Star News

Click here for gay travel resources in Argentina.

Purple Roofs Newsletter 11/9/13

Author: , November 9th, 2013

Mark and ScottWelcome to the Purple Roofs gay travel newsletter.

Our articles section now has four parts – local news,
general interest, travel event news (including upcoming events and reviews and photos of past events), and finally sweepstakes and contests.

We’ve got lots of other great stuff for you this month, too – including a feature article on our visit to Seattle, a Gay Book Review, Hawaii, Traveling on the Royal Scotsman, and Autumn in New York.

And we’re featuring a number of other gay travel articles from around the world.

You’ll also find some great accommodation specials and discounts, tons of upcoming gay travel events, and much more.

Chanric InnThe Chanric Inn: The Perfect Mix of Comfort, Luxury and Culinary Delights


The Chanric Inn (R) is a small, contemporary and luxury gay owned hotel in Calistoga, Napa Valley, California. Upscale ambience, beautiful pool, hot tub, couples massages on place. Soft drinks, Nespressos complementary as evening hors-d’euvres with selected wines and champagne at night. Turn down service, free WIFI & Parking. We offer a Gourmet Signature 3 course brunch that we’re famous for.

Visit The Chanric Inn Website Here

Our Featured Articles This Month:


RSVP CruiseTRAVELING IN OUR FABULOUS GAY WORLD: “Cruise Excursions” Book Review
by Don & Ray
We ran across this book by an Australian author who has been reading our travel columns here on Purpleroofs for the past few years and from start to finish his book is a MUST for anyone traveling to Europe and or the Baltic. This was written as a record of his travels with Atlantis and R.S.V.P. gay cruises in the Baltic and the Mediterranean – though the information is totally universal as the very same shore trips are available week in and week out on just about all the cruise lines.
Full Story

Carlos Melia on the Royal ScotsmanUK, SCOTLAND: Traveling on the Royal Scotsman
by Carlos Melia
Traditional style and elegant comfort provide an unparalleled way to explore the very best of Scotland and the Highlands. Here is my photo album and videos of the daily life onboard the luxury train “The Royal Scotsman” by Orient-Express, traveling from/to Edinburgh across the Highlands. I spent 5 fabulous days onboard, and I have to say, it is without a doubt a true travel experience. The train itself becomes your destination, and the most sophisticated and comfortable way to explore the breathtaking wonders of this amazing country.
Full Story

Hawaii Big IslandUSA, HAWAII:
The Straight Scoop on Gay and Lesbian Adventures in Hawaii

Yes, my dear, there is a wealth of fun for Gays and Lesbians to partake in Hawaii. From clubs to tours…They don’t call Oahu the meeting place for nothing!

Sure, the Aloha spirit flows through the pulsating dance floors of some very friendly nightclubs. But what do you do during the daylight hours, other than work on a gorgeous tan?
Full Story

FallUSA, NEW YORK: Autumn In New York
by Robert Saldarini
Slightly above Albany and down to New York City, the Hudson River Valley offers a thriving diverse community with an established LGBT presence. October’s warm days and crisp nights accent the beauty of autumn’s prime. The vibrancy of the fall foliage makes a car trip a perfect fun-filled escape. So, pull up a map and see where in the Valley is the best place for your personal experience. If you ever had a reason to break the piggybank, a stay at Mohonk Mountain House in New Paltz (Mountain Rest Road) may make you scramble for a hammer.
Full Story

SeatacUSA, WASHINGTON: Visiting Gay Seattle: Queen Anne Hill & The Airport
by Scott & Mark
Cute, cute, cute. Take Queen Anne Ave. up the hill from close to the Space Needle. Round the corner at the top, and you’re in one of the cutest shopping districts in Seattle. Here you’ll find about a thousand pizza places (including a branch of favorite Via Tribunali), Chocolopolis (with one of the cutest chocolatiers we’ve met yet), and a great bunch of little boutique shops, cafes and restaurants.
Full Story

Watch the Leaves Change in These 8 Cities This Fall
The Fall season is an exciting time to travel. The leaves are changing colors, the temperatures are cooling off, and everyone seems more relaxed in general. If you’re looking at taking a trip any time soon, you should consider one or more of these cities.
Full Story


We also scour the web to bring you all the gay travel news we can find. You can see these posts on a daily basis at http://www.purpleroofs.com/gay-travel-blog, or sign up for our RSS feed. Here are some of our favorites from the last month.

Local Stories:

BELIZE: The Perfect Belize Getaway
If you’re planning a trip to Belize, chances are you’ve already pulled up images of tucans perched in the jungle, the laid-back shores of Ambergris Caye, or maybe the view from top resorts like Francis Ford Coppola’s Turtle Inn and the luxury El Secreto, so named for its sense of deep seclusion and privacy.
Full Story

CANADA, QUEBEC: Five Things to Do for Free in Montreal
It’s a taste of French culture in North America: Montreal.
Full Story

CHINA: Gay Guy Goes to China
Gay China is much more apparent than I expected, but with an internal population of over 1 billion people it really is obvious to understand why there is a hive of homosexual activity.
Full Story

CHINA: Transgender Woman – Hong Kong Customs Officers Behaved Like Animals
A South American transgender woman has has claimed Hong Kong customs officials behaved ‘like animals’ during a body search which lasted more than nine hours.
Full Story

CHINA: Macau – Asia’s Flashiest City
Planning a trip to China’s gambling capital? With private, walled-in gardens, public beaches, and historic sites that reference the city’s strong Portugese influence, you’ll have plenty to do, whether you’re hitting the slots or not.
Full Story

CHINA: Getting Around Beijing, China
I may have only spent time in Beijing, and took a train across the country, but the sheer size of its towns and cities, the growth of the skyline, and its modern look just exemplifies the place that China holds in the world.
Full Story

CHINA/NORTH KOREA: From Beijing to North Korea – Another World
Waking to a busy, lively train while cramped in the top bunk of a sleeper is not most people’s idea of enjoyment and excitement but for me it is one of those days in the year that put a smile on my sleep.
Full Story

EUROPE: Traveling Europe by Rail
For many privileged South Africans, the words “Eurail Pass” bring back memories of epic backpack journeys through Europe during university years abroad.
Full Story

GERMANY: Berlin New Year’s Survival Guide
We have decided to spend our New Years Eve with friends from around the world in Berlin this year, and I have been doing some research on the NYE Survival List for our time there.
Full Story

GERMANY: Autumn in Germany
Autumn in most countries is usually pretty, but when in the spa city of Baden-Baden in southwestern Germany a few weeks ago, I found it particularly beautiful.
Full Story

ISRAEL: Visiting the Roman Ruins in Israel
Today was an adventure as my parents and I, who are in Israel together, went on a day trip through the Bible.
Full Story

ITALY: Visiting Rome for the Day
Okay, well in all actuality I was in Rome for slightly more than a day — just under 36 hours to be precise.
Full Story

PANAMA: Casco Viejo, Panama City’s Hot Spot
You don’t need much time to process what’s going on after the elevator door slides open onto the rooftop at the Tantalo Hotel in Panama City’s Casco Viejo neighborhood.
Full Story

PORTUGAL: Guide to Gay Lisbon
Arrive in Lisbon during daylight and the city is discrete, there’s very little to suggest it is gay welcoming, but there’s nothing to say that there will be a problem for gay travellers.
Full Story

RUSSIA: Putin Rolls Out the Welcome Mat for Gays at the Olympics. Sort Of.
Russian President Vladimir Putin is saying gays are welcome at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi.
Full Story

RUSSIA: Pride House to Sneak Into Russian Olympics
While Vladimir Putin may have no interest in LGBT people having a place at the Olympics in Sochi, Pride House International may have found its own way of promoting gay rights.
Full Story

RUSSIA: Gay Group Plans Games After Sochi Olympics
A group in Russia has announced plans to hold a “gay games” in Moscow just days after the Winter Olympics take place in Sochi in February 2014.
Full Story

SINGAPORE: Anti Gay or a Gay Friendly Travel Destination?
Legally, Singapore is not friendly to the LGBT community; in practice, however, it’s a different story.
Full Story

TAIWAN: Corporations Support Taiwan Pride
Fortune 500 companies welcomed Taipei Pride as a sign of Asia’s progress on LGBT rights.
Full Story

TRINIDAD & TOBAGO: Street Food
One of the first things you’ll notice about the islands of Trinidad and Tobago – besides the rolling mountains, romantic beaches, and endless palm trees – is the deep love of local food by those who know it best.
Full Story

UK,ENGLAND: London’s Elephant Octopus Mural
London’s East End has to be one of the most cool neighborhoods not just in London, but probably Europe.
Full Story

USA: Chicago Gay Couple Sets Out on Year-Long Tour of USA
DJ Doran and Joe Morales the stars of the web based travel and adventure show “The Adventures of Joey & DJ” and seen on Out n About TV have departed Chicago on their 52 week journey to discover and explore Gay America aboard their 33’ vintage 1979 Bluebird Wanderlodge.
Full Story

USA, CALIFORNIA: Santa Barbara on a Budget
There’s no denying that Santa Barbara, one of the most beautiful towns on California’s central coast (and perhaps the entire United States), comes at a cost.
Full Story

USA, HAWAII: Oahu Is More Than Honolulu
Being on the West Coast, the Hawaiian Islands are a popular destination for many of my clients and each island has its own uniqueness.
Full Story

USA, ILLINOIS: New Things to Do in Chicago
When the Supreme Court ruled on June 26 that the federal same-sex marriage ban called the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) was unconstitutional, roaring cheers were heard throughout our nation.
Full Story

USA, NEVADA: Las Vegas Vacation Rental Company Refuses Gay Couple
When partners Dr. Timothy Seelig and Dan England received an invitation from a company called Best Vacations Ever for a discounted time share vacation package, the pair decided to take them up on the offer.
Full Story

USA, NEW MEXICO: Santa Fe Gets a Tourism Boost from Marriage Equality Fight
Gay marriage has helped fuel a tourism boomlet in gay-friendly Santa Fe, New Mexico.
Full Story

USA, NEW YORK: The Catskill Mountains
Once Himalayas-high and populated by Paleoindians some 13,000 years ago, the Catskills (three hours or less from New York City) are truly ancient.
Full Story

USA, OHIO: Ohio’s Hocking Hills – Breathtaking Scenery
Not only does Ohio’s Hocking Hills region offer breathtaking forests, waterfalls, scenery and unforgettable experiences, but it also boasts a host of lodging options that are truly one-of-a-kind.
Full Story

USA, TENNESSEE: Visiting Tennessee’s Discovery Park of America
The gleaming white building with curved exteriors and a spaceship-like tower emerges from the flat landscape of West Tennessee like something out of science fiction, but it’s not a villain’s lair or superhero’s headquarters.
Full Story


General Gay Travel News:

Gay Tourism May Be Worth $200 Billion Next Year
The spending power of LGBTI tourists has been estimated to be worth $202 billion in 2014, a global tourism conference has heard.
Full Story

Are Anti Gay Countries Missing Out on LGBT Tourists?
The ‘Out Now Global LGBT2020 Study’ shows 73% of respondents said that the position of local LGBT people affected where they spend their holiday – 36% to a great extent and a further 37% to a moderate extent.
Full Story

Are Airline Lounges Worth It?
From small mechanical issues to ill-timed blizzards, few of us have traveled in the past few years without running into some sort of mishap at the airport.
Full Story

Museums Ought to Be Free
You see, it was when I was living in London as a university student that I discovered the amazing benefits of free access to art & culture.
Full Story


Gay Event Reviews:

CHINA: Hong Kong Pride Bigger Than Ever in 2013
Today’s Hong Kong Pride showed the LGBT community there are more visible than ever before.
Full Story

CURACAO: Celebrates First Gay Pride
Hundreds of Curacao visitors and residents celebrated the island’s very first Pride Week, September 25-29th, 2013.
Full Story


Upcoming Event News:

AUSTRALIA: Adelaide’s Rainbow Festival Begins
(Nov 9) FORGET about painting the town red, for the next two weeks Adelaide will go rainbow as the Feast Festival opens across the city.
Full Story

AUSTRIA: Gay Snow Happening Coming to Solden, Austria in March
(Mar 22-29) It’s coming for its 16th year, Gay Snow Happening in Solden from 22 – 29 March 2014.
Full Story

NEW ZEALAND: Auckland Gay Pride to Start Later in 2014
(Feb 22) The Auckland Pride Festival Trust is pleased to announce the official route and new start time for next year’s Auckland Pride Parade 2014.
Full Story

IGLTA Plans 33rd Annual Convention in Cape Town
(2016) The International Gay & Lesbian Travel Association will host its 33rd Annual Global Convention in Cape Town, South Africa in 2016.
Full Story

SWEDEN: A Pink Christmas in Stockholm
(Dec 9-15) 2013 is starting to come to an end. This can only mean one thing: Christmas! The supermarkets have their Christmas aisles creeping in and everywhere you look there are ‘gift ideas’.
Full Story

SWEDEN: Calling All Snomosexuals to Arosa
I’ve been. It’s great! Seriously – it’s a fantastically organised week for which you need plenty of energy for.
Full Story

UK: Nottingham Pride Shut Down By Debt
The charity that runs Nottingham’s annual Pride festival has been forced to close amid debts of almost #17,000. Acting chairman Ben Holmes said the charity had been in financial trouble for the last three years.
Full Story


Sweepstakes:

CANADA, ONTARIO: Win a Trip to Toronto World Pride 2014
(Dec 31) Win a once-in-a-lifetime trip for two to Toronto for WorldPride in 2014. Join us in June 2014 for the world’s largest international celebration of LGBTQ culture and human rights.
Full Story

SWEDEN: Win a Same Sex Wedding at Sweden’s Ice Hotel
To celebrate the UK’s Marriage (Same-sex) Act finally coming into law in 2014, ICEHOTEL in partnership with Discover-the-World and VisitSweden UK are offering same-sex couples a once in a lifetime, truly intimate, personalised wedding at the ICEHOTEL in Sweden.
Full Story

USVI: Win Five Nights in the US Virgin Islands at Sand Castle on the Beach
(Apr 1) Sand Castle On The Beach Resort welcomes you and your loved ones to vacation in a beautiful, tropical environment. Beachfront on the Caribbean Sea, enjoy the newly added amenities on this special property. There are two pools on site – one beachfront, the other clothing optional.
Full Story

Gay Travel Events – The List:


Check out our new events list, where we list gay events around the world – http://www.purpleroofs.com/gay-travel-events.html.

Sign Up for Our Gay Travel Sweepstakes


Caribbean Sweepstakes: We’re teaming up with the beautiful Sand Castle on the Beach in the US Virgin Islands (http://www.sandcastleonthebeach.com/) to give away 5 nights in the Caribbean.
http://www.purpleroofs.com/contest.html

Check Out Our Special Offer Section


Our innkeepers and travel agents offer exclusive specials to travelers who find them on Purple Roofs. This month, we have 108 Accommodation/Tour offers listed in 18 countries and regions around the world! No membership required.
http://www.purpleroofs.com/lateavailability.html

Visit Our Other Websites:


Gayapolis: Personals, daily news, and a great gay and lesbian directory.
http://www.gayapolis.com

Mi Casa Su Casa: Our home trade network – join for just $75 for 5 years.
http://www.gayhometrade.com

Gay Realty Network: Real estate professionals around the world.
http://www.gayrealtynetwork.com

Purple Unions: Gay friendly wedding vendors around the world.
http://www.purpleunions.com

Find Us On Twitter:

We have a Twitter account – follow us at http://twitter.com/purpleroofs.

Find Us On Facebook:


We have a Facebook page too – like us at http://www.facebook.com/purpleroofs.

Find Us On Google+:


We have a Google+ page as well – follow us at https://plus.google.com/105511413517642023561/posts.

Find Us On Pinterest:


And we have a Pinterest board as well – follow us at https://pinterest.com/gayapolis/purple-roofs/.

Marriage Equality News:


Also check out Gay Marriage Watch, our daily news blog about gay marriage: We bring you all the news on the fight for gay marriage daily. Join our blog email list by sending a subscription request to info@purpleunions.com. Find the full blog at http://www.purpleunions.com/blog/index.html. You can now also find us on Twitter with regular updates every day at http://www.twitter.com/gaymarriagewatc.

That’s it for this issue – enjoy the newsletter!

Mark & Scott

PurpleRoofs – http://www.purpleroofs.com

PO Box 4666, El Dorado Hills, CA 95762

PS: Wanna sponsor this newsletter and reach over 27,000 people? Email us at wheretostay@purpleroofs.com for details.

Hong Kong Pride Bigger Than Ever in 2013

Author: , November 9th, 2013

Hong Kong, ChinaToday’s Hong Kong Pride showed the LGBT community there are more visible than ever before

The head of Hong Kong’s Equal Opportunity Commission Dr York Chow addressed the crowd, as did member of the legislative council Cyd Ho.

This year, the fifth Hong Kong Pride, saw more corporate sponsorship with JP Morgan and Citibank joining Barclays, Goldman Sachs and Nomura who gave cash sponsorship last year, Fridae reports.

Authored By Ana Leach – See the Full Story at Gay Star News

Click here for gay travel resources in China.

Adelaide’s Rainbow Festival Begins

Author: , November 9th, 2013

Adelaide Feast Festival 2013FORGET about painting the town red, for the next two weeks Adelaide will go rainbow as the Feast Festival opens across the city. More than 2000 people are expected to join tomorrow’s Pride March from Rymill Park through the city to officially open the gay and lesbian arts festival, with a further 1000 attending the opening night party at the event’s hub, the Lion Arts Centre on North Tce.

Artistic director Catherine Fitzgerald said the program featured more than 120 shows across cabaret, live music, theatre, film and visual arts all fitting the festival’s theme of “gender: mix it up”. “We want to mix it up, play with it and sort of push boundaries and get people to think differently,” she said.

“Feast is a festival for everyone, we encourage as many people to come as possible because we showcase and highlight some of our best queer talent for all the world to see and celebrate.”

Authored By Petra Starke – See the Full Story at the Herald Sun

Click here for gay travel resources in South Australia.

Curacao Celebrates First Gay Pride

Author: , October 29th, 2013

Curacao Pride 2013Hundreds of Curacao visitors and residents celebrated the island’s very first Pride Week, September 25-29th, 2013. The Caribbean island of Curacao has always been welcoming to the LGBT community with great accommodations, events and attitude, but Gay Pride Week took the island’s commitment to the LGBT community to another level.

Hundreds of people showed up at The White Affair event at the Floris Suite Hotel, host property of Curacao’s first Pride Week, transforming the hotel into “Pride City” for the week. In addition, hotels and restaurants contributed with gourmet food and drinks in support of Pride Week.

They included the Hilton Curacao, Curacao Marriott Beach Resort, Santa Barbara Beach & Golf Resort, Kyoto Restaurant, Tempo Doeloe Restaurant, Pirate Bay, Sandton Kura Hulanda Hotel and others. There were also events at the Rainbow Lounge, neighborhood bar, Williwood, and after parties at The Gallery Lounge in Punda, with almost 700 people in attendance across all events.

See the Full Story at The Best Gay Travel Guide

Click here for gay travel resources in the Netherlands Antilles.