Taking a Gaycation From China

Author: , October 6th, 2017

gaycation from China

China’s LGBTI community are flocking to more rainbow-friendly cities in Asia to vacation and be free to be open with their sexuality. There are about 70 million LGBTI people living in mainland China, but because it is still taboo, many can’t live openly.

The 2016 China LGBT Community Report revealed many mainland Chinese LGBTI people are jetting off to cities such as, Bangkok, Taipei and Hong Kong to let their hair down. Enjoying the cities’ LGBTI scenes is just one reason Chinese people visit them. Many LGBTI people go to Thailand to stock up on the HIV preventative medication PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis) or to have gender-affirming surgery.
Sam is a studen in Shenzhen often heads to Hong Kong to hang out with his surrogate LGBTI family.

‘The reason I keep coming back to Hong Kong is because I feel more comfortable here – like I can finally live my real life,’ he told the South China Morning Post. ‘Plus my friends and family on the mainland hardly visit, so I don’t have to be scared of being recognised. ‘Maybe in future, when I have a job and can hopefully move to Hong Kong, I might come out to them.’

By Shannon Power – Full Story at Gay Star News

China Gay Travel Resources

Gaycation Magazine Acquires “The Word” LGBT Paper

Author: , February 10th, 2015


Gaycation Magazine (www.gaycationmagazine.com) announced today that it has agreed to acquire “The Word” (www.thegayword.com) Newspaper and its sister publication “Up Downtown” from Ted Fleischaker and Word Publications. After almost a quarter century in the founder’s “family” both popular papers, are changing hands, but they will still remain in the “family.”

The sale will be completed by April 1st 2015. The Word will remain headquartered in Indianapolis and will continue to be focused on serving the needs of the LGBT community in the region.

The Word is Indiana’s only Gay newspaper. Founded in 1991 to serve just Indianapolis, it’s now available in over 7 states. Up Downtown covers the downtown area and its motto “If it happens in the Mile Square, you’ll read it here!” provides downtown residents with the latest happenings. “I really am proud to have started something such as these two publications which have seen such widespread success,” says Fleischaker.

The acquisition will extend Gaycation Magazine’s domestic media platform, particularly in the Midwest, helping to fuel its aggressive growth strategy. The deal will complement both publications by expanding key content vertically while also accelerating the digital evolution of both companies.

Gaycation Magazine publishes 10 issues a year and is focused on the sophisticated LGBT segment of travel.

“The Word and Up Downtown are a perfect fit for our growing portfolio of news and travel media assets and the name and rich heritage of both titles will be preserved independently vastly expanding our overall print and digital platforms and extending our reach across the growing LGBT market.” says DJ Doran, Publisher of Gaycation Magazine.

“The Word enjoys a reputation as one of the most trusted and respected sources for LGBT news and entertainment across 7 states and has a devoted and loyal audience. Its empathetic insight into Midwest Gay news and culture is itself a remarkable resource and we will work hard to retain what Ted has built here in Indianapolis,” says Doran.

“This acquisition will serve to broaden the boundaries of Gaycation Magazine, The Word and Up Downtown, and is another significant step in our strategy to establish a network of print and digital properties in not only the Midwest but also in emerging LGBT growth regions within the US and beyond.”

“We are thrilled to welcome the creative team at The Word to the growing Gaycation family.”

HomeAway ®, Breaks One Million Live Vacation Rental Listings

Author: , July 1st, 2014

HomeAway photoHomeAway, Inc. (NASDAQ: AWAY), the world’s leading online marketplace for vacation rentals, today announced its one millionth live vacation rental listing. The milestone further establishes HomeAway as the world’s largest marketplace for alternative accommodations – the inventory listed is nearly twice the size of any other vacation rental company and, by renting an entire vacation home, families and groups have access to more than 2.8 million rooms, more than the world’s four largest hotel companies have combined.

In celebration of this milestone, HomeAway is giving away $10,000 for a stay in a vacation rental with its “Million Ways to Stay Contest.” Travelers are invited to enter for a chance to win a stay in the destination of their choice by liking HomeAway on Facebook (more details are included below). 

In 2006, HomeAway listed 60,000 vacation homes in 90 countries when it launched HomeAway.com. Now, through its network of sites, the company offers vacation rentals in 190 countries around the world. HomeAway could not have achieved such steady growth the past several years without property managers and homeowners taking advantage of the growing awareness of vacation rentals as a more affordable alternative to hotels, particularly for families and groups, and therefore increasingly listing their second homes. As a result, in 2013, owners and property managers collectively earned more than $11 billion in rental revenue and travelers shared more than 201 million memories together in HomeAway rentals, when you consider each person has a lasting memory from each day he or she is on vacation1.

Today, HomeAway offers something for everyone with properties in 99 percent of countries in the world, covering every type of location, including oceanfront, lakefront, downtown, mountain and many more. Travelers seeking off-the-beaten-path experiences can also find their dream accommodations with properties ranging from cabooses to castles, yurts to yachts, tipis to treehouses or even an airplane…

NOTE:  This is an excerpt from the original post found at Gaycation Magazine – HomeAway ®, Breaks One Million Live Vacation Rental Listings

Kimpton’s Hotel Monaco and Hotel Palomar

Author: , June 13th, 2014

Gaycation Magazine Kimpton's Gay Couple BikingIf you’ve been wondering what to do for the summer and you find yourself in Philly, why not check out Kimpton’s Hotel Monaco and Hotel Palomar? They recently launched a Philly Gaycation hotel package. As a company, Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants has always been a company that’s been committed to equality and an overall philosophy of inclusion and diversity.  Kimpton properties are proud to celebrate unique differences of guests and employees.

Kimpton hotels across the country are members of the IGLTA (International Gay and Lesbian Travel Association) and TAG approved, a certification that assures gay-friendly hotel practices…

NOTE:  This is an excerpt from the original post found at Gaycation Magazine – Kimpton’s Hotel Monaco and Hotel Palomar

New Gay Travel Magazine Launching in Time for Pride Season

Author: , March 26th, 2014


A new gay travel magazine, focusing more on the travel needs of same sex couples and real travel information, is launching with a June-July pride edition.

We spoke with founder DJ Doran about the new publication, called “Gaycation” – who its for, what it’s about, and where he plans to take it.

Purple Roofs: What is Gaycation?

Gay TravelDJ: Gaycation, by its very name evokes a notion of being on any experiential vacation that is specificlally tailored to the lifestyle of the LGBT traveling community.

PR: How is Gaycation different from other gay travel magazines?

DJ: Gaycation Magazine was created because we believe the personality of LGBT travel is changing. The world has grown smaller and more accessible, yet more homogenized and less exotic. Our goal is to inspire and guide those who travel the world to connect with its people, experience their cultures, and understand their perspectives.

Today’s mature and sophisticated LGBT travelers demand more than the superficial, the mass-produced, the mass-consumed and the mass-experienced. They look for the authentic in people, destinations, and products. They long for meaningful and memorable connections with the places they go and the people that they meet. Gaycation Magazine is a fresh voice in LGBT travel, offering our readers 10 issues annually that will inspire our readers to immerse themselves in the authentic experiences that create deep connections between them as the traveler and the places they visit, and the local culture.

San Francisco City Hall - Gay Pride 2013Our content is derived both from professional travel writers and reader submitted stories about their personal travel experiences. Gaycation Magazine works with top brands, hotels and destinations to provide insightful content, inspiration and advice to effectively connect with and serve discerning travelers. Our features and articles are edited for a mature and sophisticated audience desiring rich travel content, guiding and connecting our readers to have a deep, rich more personal travel experience.

In a vast ocean of stale content and tired formats we will continually challenge ourselves to offer our readers a unique and immersive travel experience by meeting and serving the editorial needs of the mature, sophisticated gay traveler whether they are in their 20’s, 30’s or beyond.

PR: Who’s the audience for the magazine?

DJ: Our target audience is the mature, sophisticated Gay traveler of any age group focused on the other facets of the travel experience beyond the party circuit. Although we edit our content more toward a slightly older Gay demographic we welcome travelers of all age groups that desire to read about a more sophisticated aspect of Gay travel.

PR: Isn’t this a bad time to start a new magazine?

Old MontrealDJ: This is a very good question. It is a well established fact that most print publications are feeling pressure because of the cost of paper and printing. Digital platforms reach a wider more engaged audience without the egregious financial costs of printing and paper, so why print at all? The fact of the matter is that of 100 new publications launched each year, less than 10 survive to print the second year according to industry experts.

Having said that, there are several exceptions to this rule. Niche print publications continue to experience strong sustained growth, especially in the LGBT segment. Don’t get me wrong, in my opinion every publication needs to offer its subscribers a digital option as an a la carte to their print copy with a website and plethora of social media platforms as supporting players, but going digital only screams salvation to some print publications that are battling low ad pages and declining circulation with the bigger question remaining: if you’re not selling advertising in your ink-on paper magazine, what makes you think that you’re going to have better success on the web? I truly believe that the minute you lose your connectivity with your readers you’re in trouble whether you are a print magazine or digital magazine.

Seattle SkylineThe sacred vow that some publications make with their new life partner, digital which ignores their print version is usually a last ditch effort to save a reader bond that was broken many times earlier. At the end of the day it comes down to this, if magazines fail to create a community where we make our readers feel like members or just numbers after a dollar sign, we won’t have anything to publish in print or digital. Our team at Gaycation Magazine recognizes this and our mission of a more inclusive organic interaction with our readers is a concept that hasn’t been tried before in our genre and we believe there is a huge under represented segment of mature, sophisticated Gay travelers that will welcome our unique approach.

PR: How can someone get a copy?

DJ: Gaycation will be offered in newsstands for $5.99 per issue at Barnes and Noble, Hastings Books and Hudson News beginning June 11th 2014. Annual paid subscriptions are only sold by request through our website, at pride events, travel related events, trade shows and subscription request cards. The annual subscription price of $9.99 for all 10 issues of our print magazine which also includes a free digital version, offers our content to everyone at an exceptional value. Single digital downloads for $1.99 can be purchased on i-Tunes, Amazon, Google Play and more…

Rainbow FlagPR: When will it be available?

DJ: The first issue closes April 5th, 2015 In your mail box June 5th 2014 (if you become a subscriber) and for sale on Newsstands June 11th, 2014

PR: Any other thoughts?

DJ: We look forward to introducing Gaycation to a LGBT traveling community yearning for more from a Gay travel magazine than naked torsos and gyrating 20 somethings on the cover and within the pages.

Switzerland: Gaycation Winners Check Out the Swiss Alps

Author: , January 17th, 2014

Switzerland contest winners

Photo via Chris Hastings

Auf wierdersehen, America! San Francisco couple and Ultimate Swiss Gaycation winners Chris Hastings and Andrew Bundy left the US in true SWISS style for a week-long journey through Zurich, Zermatt, and Arosa.

The pair kicked off the gaycation at the Park Hyatt Zurich, passed through Zermatt for an unbelievable couple of days of skiing, and is now en route to Arosa for the annual Arosa Gay Ski Week and a stay at the incomparable Tschuggen Grand Hotel.

Authored By Tyler Neasloney – See the Full Story at Passport Magazine

Click here for gay travel resources in Switzerland.

My Favorite Gaycation – Costa Rica

Author: , January 23rd, 2013

Screen_shot_2013-01-23_at_11.00_.19_AM__580_866_s_c1Pura Vida. (pure life). Is there a better way to greet your friends, family, or just random strangers? While exploring Costa Rica you are guaranteed to hear this as soon as you arrive at the airport. Don’t worry gays, Costa Rica is very GAY FRIENDLY! Costa Rica is on the top of the LGBT travel list for many!

Since Costa Rica is very Gay friendly many LGBT people such as myself keep returning to experience the outdoor adventures, scenery, and friendly culture that this country has to offer. I was in Costa Rica three times during 2010 so I am able to give you a more up close and personal look at this gay friendly travel destination.

Costa Rica is a country where you are able to escape your normal routine and get in touch with your inner self. From hiking, relaxing in a hot spring, swimming in the ocean, or zip lining hundreds of feet through the rain forest you are bound to have a gay soulful experience.

Authored By Mitch Laffins AKA Darla Gayle – See the Full Story at GayTravel.com

Click here for gay travel resources in Costa Rica.


My Favorite Gaycation – Paris

Author: , January 21st, 2013

Paris, FranceBefore I’d met my boyfriend, I was planning a 10-day Eurovacation for the summer of 2012: London (for World Pride), Amsterdam (for the orange) and Berlin (for the sausage). But somehow, after we’d met, he convinced me to give Paris a try instead.

Once we’d de-boarded the plane, we zipped through customs with no questions asked of us and no forms to fill out. The terminal we walked through was marvelous (it looked like a huge wine barrel). It was a stark contrast to the non-air-conditioned, cattle-car train to the city that looked straight out of Ben Kingsley’s Ghandi.

After multiple transfers, we finally arrived at Les Jardins du Marais, our hotel. Apparently, hotels aren’t so abundant in La Marais, the gay/chic area, so this one with a 10-minute walk to the main drag would have to suffice. Our room was notably small, but it was nice and had everything we needed except for a full-length mirror.

At Gay Realty Watch, we look for news to share with you about the gay real estate market – both lgbt real estate news and news specific to gay and lesbian real estate meccas.

Authored By Kareem McJagger – See the Full Story at GayTravel.com

Click here for gay realtors, mortgage lenders, and other real estate professionals in Paris.

If you have a gay real estate story that you’d like to share with us, contact us at info@gayrealtynetwork.com

My Favorite Gaycation – Atlantis Cruise + Circuit Festival

Author: , January 20th, 2013

steve-v-rodriguez-naplesThe summer of 2011 may have been the most decadent gaycation that I’ve ever taken which began with a Mediterranean Atlantis Cruise and ended up during Circuit Festival in Barcelona. The 20-day marathon really tested my group’s endurance to endure a multitude of parties, excursions, meet and greets, live shows, dinners, parties and of course boys! Whew! I’m exhausted just reliving it, but wouldn’t have traded it in for the world. Gay cruises, like Atlantis, are beyond fabulous which allow you to explore the world and experience several destinations within a condensed period.

Where else can you meet new friends, that more often than not, become future travel buds. If you want to explore the many destinations and excursions, the cruise does an amazing job of offering several options from rigorous to relaxing that help you become acquainted with each and every destination. Others like to take advantage of the plethora of amenities that the ship has to offer, like lounging by the pool and checking out the sexy scenery…aka boys.

The staff of Atlantis hires the best deejays and outfits the cruise with state of the art sound systems for the outdoor pool areas. Besides the pool, I loved taking advantage of the spa and gym facilities, which is probably the most relaxing activity you can treat yourself to on a vacation.

Authored By Steve V. Rodriguez – See the Full Story at GayTravel.com

Click here for gay travel resources.


San Francisco – My Favorite Gaycation

Author: , January 19th, 2013

sf-gaycationIn December of 2011 my best friend and I decided we wanted to take a “gaycation” together, and we determined that there would be no better city for this than San Francisco!

San Francisco is the nation’s second-most densely populated city, and it is the 14th most populous city in the United States. It is also one the top tourists destinations in the world because of its landmarks, which include the former prison on Alcatraz Island, the Chinatown District, the infamous cable cars, and most notably, the Golden Gate Bridge. San Francisco is renowned for its fog, steep hills, cooler summers, assorted styles of architecture, as well as its liberal attitudes and being a center for activism. In fact, the city is home to the nation’s largest gay neighborhood, known as The Castro.

My friend Miguel and I decided if we were going to make this a true “gaycation”, we wanted to stay right in the middle of all the action, so we booked a reservation for the Parker Guest House. This comfy bed and breakfast is located just a few blocks over from Market Street, which is where many of the gay clubs and bars are located as well as many restaurants and shops. For us, this option was the perfect choice, the staff was incredibly helpful, knowledgeable, and friendly. We actually are still friends on Facebook with a couple of them. In addition to the traditional breakfast, there is a wine reception every evening, which allowed us the opportunity to mingle with other travelers, make some new friends, and get suggestions on places to check out.

Authored By Nathan Cathey – See the Full Story at GayTravel.com

Click here for gay travel resources in San Francisco.