Gay Miami Beach

South Beach, Miami Gay Travel We flew into Miami in early April, headed to gay Miami Beach for its seventh annual Pride celebrations and the sun-kissed climate of the Florida coast, not knowing what to expect from a city rebuilding the visibility of its LGBTI community. What we found during our short but eclectic time perched on the shores was the magnificent fire that first gave inspiration to the original pride marches of the late 1960s and sparked a movement that began to change the nation; and it’s alive and well. This year, Pride in Miami Beach returned to the true roots of the LGBTI movement, aiming to bring diverse communities together in understanding and provide a safe space for self-expression and enjoyment for everyone – something that other prides have arguably lost sight of in recent years, in favor of weekend-bender parties. In gay Miami Beach for the first time, and reveling in the delights of a sunny Pride, we decided to take in some of the other attractions of the city. From historical to culinary, architectural to stylish and a nightlife unique to only few LGBTI capitals – it’s all for the taking in beautiful Miami Beach…

By Dan Beeson – Full Story at Gay Star News

Miami Beach Gay Travel Resources

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Eleven Things to Do in Boston

Boston One of the enjoyable things about visiting a major city in the US is that most enable you to see the country through a slightly different prism: New York, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Chicago, Miami… all offer a very different perspective and experience. Boston, in Massachusetts, may not be one of the country’s biggest cities, but the viewpoint it brings is one of history. Massachusetts is the state where the Pilgrim Fathers landed in the Mayflower in 1620 and it’s where the US War of Independence began in the mid-1770s. Whereas some US cities can be dated back to the turn of the 20th Century, and the arrival of the local railroad, Boston – which in the late 1600s was the third biggest port in the world after London and Bristol – has a history going back well over 300 years. It’s also the heart of New England, regarded as one of the most beautiful areas of the US. For visitors from the UK, the city has recently become a little more accessible. Norwegian Airlines launched another of its low-cost routes from Gatwick at Easter. Book enough in advance and flights to Logan Airport cost as low as #149 each way. I flew on a 787 Dreamliner, one of the most modern and greenest planes in the air. It features windows with dimmer controls, hours of entertainment via its Android Inflight Entertainment System, plus plug-in points for phone and laptop chargers. If, like me, you fly Premium, you can also access the brand new Number One lounge at Gatwick, to kick start your trip in style. Once there, here are some suggestions for how to make the most of your trip – whether it’s just an extended weekend or longer. 1. Boston’s Freedom Trail The Freedom Trail is a 2.5km walking route in downtown Boston that includes 16 historical points of interest. It takes in the Old State House, the Granary Burial Ground (which although small, actually contains well over 5,000 bodies!), and the sites of the Boston Massacre and Boston Tea Party.

By David Hudson – Full Story at Gay Star News

Boston Gay Travel Resources

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TRAVELING IN OUR FABULOUS GAY WORLD – Melvyn's Restaurant, Palm Springs

melvyn's to use outside When we travel from coast to coast we usually do not know where to dine to have a memorable dining experience. Once we find a fabulous place, we go back again and again and again. We have been traveling to Palm Springs, California for 15 years and from the first time we went there we found one of our favorite restaurants in the entire country. Melvyn’s Restaurant which is located in the Ingleside Inn in downtown Palm Springs. We first heard about the restaurant on the television program, “Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous”. melvyns to use interiorWe knew that we had to try it out which we did 15 years ago and since then we have been back dozens of times. Mel Haber, the owner is a tremendously good looking gentleman and has owned the restaurant for 41 years. The decor and menu has not changed in all those years. If something is perfect, then why change it? It is like stepping back in 1950 and 1960’s Hollywood ! Large photos of Sinatra, Elizabeth Taylor and all of the glorious Movie stars from the past are on the walls. Usually while we are dining there, we always see a celebrity or two. Brian Ellis, the Maitre d’ has been there since day one. He has won numerous awards as being one of the finest Maitre d’s in the country. He knows how to do things right and to make every guest have a most memorable dining experience. He has made friends with many of his thousands of diners including us. Travelers to Palm Springs always return again and again to Melvyn’s. Owner Mel Haber is one of the nicest gentleman that we have ever met. He has contributed back to the community in so many ways. He has written two books on his personal experiences in operating his Inn and restaurant. He is a celebrity in his own right and has a Golden Palm Star on the Palm Springs Walk of Stars. mel haberMelvyn’s Restaurant is located in the Ingleside Inn which Mel has also owned for 41 years. Over the years, the Inn has become a magnet for Hollywood’s elite, U.S. Presidents, royalty, aristocrats, captains of industry and celebrities visiting Palm Springs. According to Wikipedia, his guests have included Frank Sinatra, Bob Hope, Lucille Ball, Marlon Brando, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Marie Shriver, Sylvester Stallone, Liza Minnelli, Liberace, Jerry Lewis, Barry Manilow, Kurt Russell, Goldie Hawn, Rita Hayworth, Pat Boone, Debbie Reynolds, Larry King, John Travolta, Sidney Sheldon, David Hasselhoff, President Gerald Ford, George Hamilton and celebrity travel columnists, Donald Pile and Ray Williams and dozens and dozens of other celebrities. Check out Melvyn’s Restaurant at www.inglesideinn.com. They are located at 200 West Ramon Road. Their phone number is 800-772-6655 and the direct number to the restaurant is 760-325.2323. For those readers who have never been to Palm Springs or are not going to be there in the immediate future, Mel Haber has given us one of his favorite recipes to share with our readers that he has on the menu. VEAL INGLESIDE – for Two people- 3 ounces of veal cutlet pounded until thin. Put in pan 2 ounces of peanut oil until hot. Flip both sides of veal into flour until lightly dusted. Whip one egg in a bowl, dip veal into egg batter, saute veal on each side 20 seconds until light brown. Remove veal from pan and throw oil out. Put veal back into the same pan. Use 2 ounces of sherry wine. Reduce for 1 minute. Add 2 ounces of demi-glaze. Cut 1/4 of an avocado fanned and put on top of veal. Cover with 2 ounces of mousseline sauce. Mousseline sauce is made with 8 ounces of heavy whipped cream combined with 4 ounces of hollandaise sauce (all whipped together). Preparation time: 6 minutes. ENJOY ! Don and RayAlways remember to have fun when traveling, meet new people and talk to everyone! TRAVELING 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 [email protected] and visit their website at http://gaytravelersataol.blogspot.com/

Las Vegas Gay Travel Resources
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Bad Weather Everywhere – Dolly Travels

Venice storm - DollyDid you think I have forgotten how to write? I have not forgotten; however, I have been distracted. Venice, with all its antique charms, also had some weather problems that made sightseeing a bit difficult. Venice is indeed charming, especially when the sun is shining on those red tile roofs and illuminating the white buildings, making them shine. But wait. Do you see that black cloud coming in from the west? That cloud means trouble. We carried umbrellas with us at all times. One never know when the rains might come, and when they do come , they can be spectacular. My tour group of last year can attest to that. Last year, we were in Murano when the black cloud appeared over the lagoon. We got onto the vaporetto for the trip back across the lagoon as quickly as we could. While on the boat, the rain came down in buckets. At times, we could hardly see the lagoon. That was pretty scary. This year, Frank and I did not encounter such a magnificent display of rainfall, but we did get wet and then cold. It was surprising how fast the temperature would plummet. We could be warm, enjoying our gelato and within a half hour we would be wet, chilled, looking for a restaurant that had hot soup. We did get to see most of the places on our agenda. We were scheduled to leave Venice on Saturday and go to the Dolomites. Unfortunately, for us, rain and thunderstorms, more cold weather was predicted for that area, so we cancelled those plans. For me, that was the most disappointing part of our entire trip. I love going to the Dolomites, especially the Alpe di Suissi area, which was our destination. I did not, however, want to spend all our time in the hotel. I could not bear to be in the Dolomites and not be able to walk on these trails. That would be torture to me. With all the weather problems in northern Italy, we decided to go back to Rome. It is warm and sunny here, and Rome is Frank’s favorite city. I wanted to go back to Florence, but it was raining there, also. Italy’s weather problems are mild compared to what we see is happening in other places in Europe. Paris has been flooded by the River Seine overflowing its banks; there is reported flooding in Bavaria, a rock concert was cancelled after 47 people were injured by lightning. Outside of Europe, I saw on the news that some places in Australia were suffering from major flooding. So here we are, in Rome again. Frank and I took a long walk up the Via Veneto this morning. When we got back to the hotel, Frank said he had had enough walking for the day, so I went to some of my favorite places by myself: the Spanish Steps (closed for repairs), Piazza Barberini, Piazza Navona, the Pantheon area (Pantheon was closed), Trevi Fountain. I threw another coin into the fountain to ensure that I will return. I can only hope and pray that this global warming and the subsequent disasters will not continue. We were fortunate that we only had to endure some rain and some cold. I am thankful for that. More adventures await us. We just have to be patient and flexible. Until next time, Arriverderci, Dolly

By Dolly Goolsby – Full Story at Dolly Travels

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LGBT Tourism: "The Show's Going to Go On"

Pulse Members of the LGBT community say the shooting that killed 50 people early Sunday at a gay nightclub in Orlando won’t stop them from travel and business as usual. “From the LGBT perspective, it will not deter us from going to Orlando,” John Tanzella, president and CEO of the International Gay & Lesbian Travel Association told CBS MoneyWatch. “If anything, it will likely drive more travel to Orlando as it’s typical in our community to want to show support.” That holds true, Tanzella said, whether it involves travel to celebrate LGBT victories or to show solidarity with a community in mourning. “One example on the positive side is before the U.S. had same sex marriage, Argentina did. Our members were selling travel to that country including honeymoon trips,” Tanzella said.

By Kate Gibson – Full Story at CBS News

Orlando Gay Travel Resources

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He Opened Doors for Gay Travelers

Edward Sotomayor Jr. Here is one of the stories from the shooting at the Pulse Nightclub in Orlando. It’s important, I think, that we tell the stories of those who lost their lives in this terrible event. Born in Sarasota, Fla., to a Puerto Rican father, Edward Sotomayor Jr., 34, made it his life’s mission to open doors for gay travelers, especially in Latin America. He was proud of his Puerto Rican heritage. And as the national brand manager for a travel agency that catered to gay people, he organized what the company’s owner, Al Ferguson, called the first ever gay cruise to Cuba. “There was so much fear in the American gay community to go to Cuba because of how they would be perceived and treated and potential security risks,” Mr. Ferguson, 54, said. “And Eddie was probably one of the leading voices to say Cuba was exceptionally safe for the gay community, and Cuba was really anxious to welcome the gay community. And it turned out to be true.” During the trip, in April, Mr. Sotomayor and Mr. Ferguson met with Mariela Castro, Raúl Castro’s daughter and a prominent gay rights advocate there. The two men also posed in front of a poster left over from President Obama’s trip. And instead of sleeping on the ship during their stay in Havana, Mr. Sotomayor found an Airbnb rental near the Malecon, an esplanade along the coast. The company later told him it was one of the first rentals in Cuba, and asked him to write a review.

By Benjamin Mueller – Full Story at The New York Times

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Street Art in Bushwick, New York City – Globetrotter Girls

Bushwick new york art Dani When I arrived in New York last week, I was told that I had brought summer with me. Apparently, it had been cold and rainy most of the spring until the weekend of my arrival – and hearing this made me feel reassured again about having spent all of May in Austin (in case you haven’t noticed yet – I’ve got a major case of FOMO and ‘scarifying’ a month in New York for four weeks in Austin wasn’t an easy decision for me to make!). To be honest, I was considering extending my stay in Austin for another three weeks (yes, I loved it that much – more on that to come next week) but then my travel plans were changed by circumstances beyond my control (more on that soon). And that’s why I ended up spending only eight days in my adopted home. Knowing that my time in New York would be short and sweet, the goal was to make the most of it. This meant: make sure to have a decent New York bagel (check), have a pizza at Roberta’s (check, and it was so worth nearly missing my flight for it)!

By Dani – Full Story at Globetrotter Girls

New York City Gay Travel Resources

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Grand Old Venice – Dolly Travels

St. Mark's Square - Venice Venice is like no other city in the world. The buildings are old and some in dire need of repair, yet these buildings seem to hold their grandeur from centuries ago, much like an aged dowager, wearing the same clothing that gave her a sense of glamour in the olden days. Some of the old palazzos have been restored while others seem to be willing to sink into the depths of the canals, content with their appearance, and in no rush to die. The most famous of all Venice sights is St. Mark’s Square, with the flamboyant church at its center, the Doge’s Palace at the eastern side and of course, all the very expensive restaurants around the perimeter. Although the pigeons are a nuisance, people still feed them, hold food in their hands while someone takes a picture of the birds eating out of their hands. Feeding the birds is against the law but the practice continues. We enjoyed a day of walking around this area and a bit further afield. This is the only city that I can say for a fact, where most of the tourists that we encounter, at some time during the day, will have a confused look on their faces as they stop, look at a map, look up at the sky or at the buildings, then turn around and go back the way they came. I do not usually enjoy seeing others in an uncomfortable position; however, I have been in those same circumstances more times than I want to recall. I am just happy that I have company in my “lostness”. Getting lost in Venice is normal. Venice is a city with no cars, motor scooters or even bicycles. One gets to where they want to be by foot or by water. There are so many little bridges over many small, winding canals. This is a delightful city in which to walk. Some little corners are so picturesque. As we were wandering around close to lunchtime, we stopped to look at the menu posted for a restaurant on a busy piazza. I said, “This is too much food for lunch.” The waiter at the door then told us that the same restaurant had a light lunch restaurant right next door. He walked us over there, and we were taken into a lovely quiet garden area. We had a delightful lunch and lingered there, talking, drinking our wine, for almost two hours. It was an enjoyable afternoon. I treasure these times, and will keep them in my memory bank, as I know I will never find this place again. We have just one day left here in Venice, then we will be off on some more adventures. I trust that you have enjoyed visiting Venice with us. You didn’t even get lost, did you? Ciao for now, Dolly

By Dolly Goolsby – Full Story at Dolly Travels

Venice Gay Travel Resources

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Riverside Villa – Gay Friendly Belize Vacation Rental

Riverside Villa Periodically we’ll feature one of our properties here to let our readers know about some great gay friendly places to stay: Riverside Villa provides the ultimate serene, secluded and romantic setting in Belize. It is located on the fast flowing banks of the Privassion which flows through the Mountain Pine Ridge, a largely undeveloped forest reserve in the Cayo District of western Belize. It’s a truly unusual location on the banks of a gorgeous river where the Mountain Pine Ridge and the jungle meet. Although the villa is privately owned it is managed by the caring and LGBT friendly staff of the adjacent Gaia Riverlodge. Guests can take their meals at the lodge’s restaurant overlooking Five Sisters waterfall (where breakfast is included in the rate). A full kitchen is also provided if you wish to enjoy your meals at the villa. At your request Gaia will deliver your meals to you at Riverside villa. Riverside Villa consists of two log and thatch cabanas connected by an open air deck with a full dining table. The cheerful sleeping cabana which holds the bedroom and bathroom is warmly furnished with a bamboo bed and Mayan fabrics and wall hangings. The full bath contains a fancifully tiled bathtub and beautiful hardwood furnishings. A screened in porch at one end of the bedroom has a hammock as well as two chairs. It is nestled into the trees and overlooks the garden with the river just beyond. The larger cabana contains a fully equipped kitchen, dining area, writing desk and a small library. It is surrounded on four sides with fully screened porches arranged into relaxed and comfortable living spaces. Hammocks and seating areas are situated to take advantage of the tropical gardens as well as the entrancing views of the river. All furnishings are locally made by Belizean craftsman. Colorful Mayan rugs, fabrics and wall hangings complete the cozy ambiance of the interior. We have recently installed a hot tub at the villa which has a fabulous view or the river. Far away from light pollution you will enjoy incredibly starry skies on clear nights. It is also the perfect place to enjoy a morning cup of coffee as the mist rises off the river. Our hot tub contains no chemicals. Guests fill it from the hot and cold water faucet to their preferred temperature. Because our water comes from a spring high up on the property we have tons of water pressure and so it fills up quickly. We have great swimming holes directly in front of the villa. After a cool dip enjoy relaxing in the thatch covered palapa next to river with two hammocks and a picnic table. Additional Guest Accommodations – Riverside Villa was designed as a spacious one bedroom home. Over the years we have had many requests from guests interested in traveling with a third or fourth party. Recent additions and upgrades have made this possible. Please see out website for details. The Cayo location is adventure central Belize. Our website also describes tours in the area. transportation and many other details about your visit. Hope to see you soon!

See the Riverside Villa Expanded Listing on Purple Roofs Here

Gay Friendly Bed and Breakfasts, Hotels, and Vacation Rentals in Belize

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TRAVELING IN OUR FABULOUS GAY WORLD: Graceland

Graceland Mansion graceland airplaneWe recently went to Memphis and toured Graceland, the home of Elvis Presley. We were there about 15 years ago and wanted to see the changes that were made. Well, not many changes have been made. It is like Niagara Falls and other U.S. Monuments, it just stays more or less the same. Graceland is the second most visited home in the country as only the White House draws more visitors. The main difference is that the White House tour is free and Graceland cost money. More than 600,000 people visit Graceland every year! When you first arrive in the area, you have to find a place to park which can be a bit tricky and expensive. Park a few blocks away on the street and park free otherwise parking lots charge $10 and up. Graceland dining roomThere is a main lobby building where you purchase your tickets or redeem them and then you go to a ‘waiting area’ where they take your photo (of course and then try to sell them to you afterwards. A shuttle bus then takes you directly across the street to Graceland and drops you off and then you are on your own and can go thru the mansion at your own speed. Most of the interior looks like early Kmart but that is the way he lived so deal with it. At least Liberace did it with class! graceland living roomThe upstairs of the mansion is off limits so you cannot see the bedroom where he died. Everything about Graceland is devoted to ‘early Elvis’. There are no photos of him in his later years when he got much heavier. After you finish viewing all you want to in the Mansion then you walk out the back door to the building in the back which houses the many gold records and hundreds of photos and souvenirs from his past. graceland graveWhen you have toured that then you follow the path to the side of the mansion where his grave is. He is buried next to his Mother and Father and his brother who died in childhood. There are always tons of flowers there from fans all over the world. Be ready to see people crying and sobbing and throwing themselves on the ground! Luckily it is fenced or else am sure that some of his fans would trample the grave. Then a shuttle bus comes along and takes you back across the street and drops you off right in front of the gift shop. Needless to say you can buy almost anything you want concerning Elvis…… refrigerator magnets, socks, shirts, caps, dolls, cards and about anything you can think of. While you are in Memphis, be sure and check out Beale Street in downtown where they have some of the greatest music bars around. There are four different tours and prices for Graceland. The Graceland Elvis VIP Tour plus the Airplanes tour runs $80.00 per person. The regular VIP Tour runs $75.00 per person. The Platinum plus airplanes tour runs $47.00. The regular Platinum tour runs $42.50 or just the Mansion Tour runs $38.50. There is a 10% discount for senior citizens. The different tours allows you to just tour the Mansion itself or to view his autos and his two airplanes which you actually get to walk thru. Before you go, be sure and check out their website, www.graceland.com You can purchase tickets online so you do not have to stand IN LINE to get your tickets. Graceland is one of those places where you really should go to once just to say you have been there. We highly suggest that you do NOT visit Graceland during Elvis’s ‘Birth Week’ or ‘Death Week’ since his hard shell fans go back year after year for those weeks. Don and RayAlways remember to have fun when traveling, meet new people and talk to everyone! TRAVELING 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 [email protected] and visit their website at http://gaytravelersataol.blogspot.com/

Tennessee Gay Travel Resources

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