TRAVELING IN OUR FABULOUS GAY WORLD: Meeting Old and New Friends

Author: , January 19th, 2018

Alexis RayOn our last driving trip to California we enjoyed seeing old friends and meeting new ones. We have known the Countess Alexis Del Lago for 18 years. Unfortunately time has taken it’s toll with her and she has had some health issues including a stroke, but she is still going.

In the past she has entertained in New York City years ago.  A great video on her is:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_rSnHG_htY4    Another wonderful video was made by Craig Calman:  http://worldofwonder.net/meet-the-legendary-and-reclusive-alexis-del-lago/.

She invited us to her apartment in West Hollywood this time where we reminisced about old times and a glorious past. At least she has had a glorious past which is more than we can say about a lot of people. Live well Countess !

The next day we had breakfast with the noted Hollywood Agent, Budd Burton Moss.   Among his many entertainers that we agent for was Rita Hayworth plus many more !   He and his wife have lived in Beverly Hill, California forever.  We had breakfast at the famous La Conversation Bakery/Cafe, which has been around for more than 30 years there.

You can either enjoy your meal inside or sit on their front patio and watch the people walk by.   http://www.laconversationbakery.com/   Last year Budd Burton Moss came out with his biography which we wrote up,
http://purpleroofs.com/gay-travel-blog/2017/06/summer-reads-traveling-fabulous-gay-world-hollywood-sometimes-reality-better-dream.html   He is in his 80’s and knows all the good stories and tales about ‘Old Hollywood’.

Ray and JewelerOn to Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills with all of it’s glitz and glamour.   We walked by one store, looked in and knew we had to enter. Peter Marco ‘Extraordinary Jewels’ is the place and located at 252 North Rodeo Drive.  Peter is the owner and he dresses the part!   When you are one of the finest jewelry stores in California why not dress the part ?  Who wants to buy a diamond ring or jewelry from someone wearing bluejeans ? Peter has a flawless reputation for selling the finest diamonds.  No trip to Beverly Hills and Rodeo Drive would be complete without visiting his shop.  His website is:  www.petermarco.com

ariz paulDriving home thru Arizona we always stop and see our friend, Paul Winer who owns the Reader’s Oasis Used Book Store in Quartzsite, Arizona located on Interstate 10.  One does not need an address to find the store, however it is located at 690 East Main St.  Quartzsite is just a very small town, population around 3,500 however in the months of January and February, RV’ers  descend on the town.

Paul and his wife have owned the bookstore for many years.  He offers a huge selection of used books in every subject matter.  Thousands of tourists a year stop to see him and his store. Paul is a VERY interesting guy and he is also a “NUDIST”.  The only thing he wears is his cowboy hat, a Turquoise blossom necklace and a ‘penis’  sock. Yep,  you read that correctly.  His wife is always fully dressed.

So when you go in, forget about the world and visit with Paul.  He also sings and plays the piano.  Here are a couple of videos to check out on him:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K_ZvmTCBn4M    and also
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4X9Ob7Y88sQ

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 gaytravelers@aol.com and visit their website at http://gaytravelersataol.blogspot.com/

Las Vegas Gay Travel Resources

Santiago de Compostela in Spain – Carlos Melia

Author: , January 17th, 2018

Santiago de Compostela

Two weeks ago, I joined a week trip by Relais & Chateaux Hotels and Restaruants, to visit all their current properties in Galicia, Spain and all over Portugal. Our first stop was Santiago de Compostela at A Quinta da Auga Hotel & Spa. This is my report on that first night.

A Quinta da Auga charm and boutique hotel, with a luxury Spa and gastronomic restaurant to discover the luxury and the beauty of Santiago de Compostela, Galicia. A Quinta da Auga, the only Hotel Spa Relais & Châteaux of Galicia, is one of the hotels with more charm of Santiago de Compostela. A Quinta da Auga design hotel stands out by his carefull restorage and decoration, a unique 5 stars Spa and the high quality of The Filigrana Restaurant a real Relais & Châteaux gastronomic experience through the “Galicia Haute Cuisine”.

Our stay and visit, was warmly hosted and coordinated by no other than Mamma Luisa and her charming daughter Luisa – owners of A Quinta da Auga. These two ladies are the sweetest ever, and if you are lucky enough to meet them, they will make your stay even more special. But I must say that their energy and hospitality, extends to all their staff. THANK YOU Mamma Luisa, looking forward seeing you soon again, in Compostela or anywhere in the world.

Authored By Carlos Melia – See the Full Story at The Carlos Melia Blog

Click here for Spain gay travel resources.

Amsterdam in the Morning – Keep Calm and Wander

Author: , January 15th, 2018

Amsterdam in the Morning - Keep Calm and Wander

In my previous blog post, I talked about what Amsterdam looks like without the tourists. This is part 2 of the post – and a continuation of my morning stroll. You might not like waking up early in the morning but it’s worth it. You’ll see more of Amsterdam when there are no tourists around.

Though you won’t be able to see museums and art galleries, walking around the city in the morning is far more rewarding than doing it when tourists are everywhere. Don’t worry about getting lost – enjoy being lost. It’s a small city, so you’ll always find a way to get back where you started. You might be surprised what you can find in the city’s little corners.

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander

Amsterdam Gay Travel Resources

Bocas del Toro: Safe for Gay Couples? – The Nomadic Boys

Author: , January 11th, 2018

Bocas del Toro - Nomadic Boys

Two gay boys hanging out on Bluff beach with no one around, except a few friendly Golden Retrievers, the palm trees and the gorgeous backdrop of the Caribbean.

We celebrated Stefan’s birthday in Bocas del Toro in Panama, an area with a wide mix of people who do not care about your sexuality. We found it to be very relaxed, with an incredibly tolerant and friendly vibe. Many LGBTQ expats have even chosen Bocas as a place to live or set up a new business, so there’s a handful of gay owned places here to check out.

We absolutely loved our holiday at Bluff Beach and definitely recommend it to other LGBTQ travellers looking for a private and very romantic slice of Caribbean paradise.

Where is Bocas del Toro?

Bocas del Toro province is in northeast Panama on the Caribbean coast and next to the border with Costa Rica. It includes a chain of 9 islands, each with its own unique charm and character. Temperatures here rarely drop below 20 degrees (68 Fahrenheit), and when it rains, it’s just a quick tropical burst of showers before it quickly clears.

Bocas is the main town and transport hub into the region, located on Colon Island. You can reach it via daily flights to/from Panama City (45 mins) or overland by bus from Panama City to Almirante (around 11 hrs), followed by a boat from Almirante (30 mins).

By Stefan Arestis – Full Story at the Nomadic Boys

Panama Gay Travel Resources

Amsterdam Without the Tourists – Keep Calm and Wander

Author: , January 8th, 2018

Amsterdam Without Tourists - Keep Calm and Wander

Here are photos of what Amsterdam looks like without the tourists.

It is estimated that there are around 17 million tourists that visit Amsterdam every year. For a tiny city, this number is already insane! Come in summer and you might think you’re in China due to the crowd – everywhere! Your photo will always have people in the background. Unless you’d walk away far from the centre. You can’t even enjoy a very nice, quiet meal in a restaurant. Bicycle? Forget it! Biking downtown is truly a nightmare for someone who doesn’t know the city’s shortcut corners.

Go Around in the Morning. Before tourists are awake, take a stroll along the city’s canals and squares. Though it’s quiet but you’ll appreciate the city’s layout without the crowd. The canals are serene and seem to have a personality of its own. At 7:00, the locals start to go out by riding their bikes to their offices. You’ll be hearing more bike bells anywhere you go and suddenly, you feel that you’re really in Amsterdam. By 9:00 a.m., the city starts to look a lot more like Disney again.

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander

Netherlands Gay Travel Resources

Masterpieces of the RijksMuseum in Amsterdam – Keep Calm and Wander

Author: , January 6th, 2018

RijksMuseum Amsterdam - Keep Calm and Wander

When you’re in Netherlands, don’t skip in getting to know all the masterpieces inside Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam. Boy, until now, I can’t help but remember the goosebumps I had staring at the originals masterpieces of Rembrandt, Van Gogh, Frans Hals, Johannes Vermeer and other Dutch masters.

How much time should I spend there? I was there two hours before is closed. That’s good enough time to explore the whole museum. But if you’re really an art enthusiast, then, you need a half day to scrutinize everything.

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander

Netherlands Gay Travel Resources

The Narrowest House in Amsterdam – Keep Calm and Wander

Author: , January 3rd, 2018

Narrowest House in Amsterdam - Alain

This may not be the thinnest house in the world but this certainly is the narrowest house facade in the world. While I’ve seen some pretty small / thin houses on my walks along the canal, this one seems to be the narrowest. I didn’t find it on my own. I joined a free walking tour guided by a friend and he pointed this out as one of the world’s narrowest houses. Obviously, you can’t disagree by the looks of it.

This should not be confused as the “narrowest in the world” because that title is already claimed by the Keret House in Poland. However, this particular house in Amsterdam has the world’s narrowest house facade. It is much bigger inside.

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander

Netherlands Gay Travel Resources

Luxembourg’s Charming “The Grund” – Keep Calm and Wander

Author: , January 2nd, 2018

The Grund Luxembourg - Keep Calm and Wander

The Grund is a charming part of Luxembourg City. According to census, there are less than 800 people living here and only 33% are Luxembourgers. The only thing I know before I came here was that Luxembourg is a haven for the ultra rich. So, maybe, some of them live here?

Where to See the Best View. The Grund skyline can be best viewed from Chemlin de la Corniche Promenade, aka, the Most Beautiful Balcony in Europe. I never had the chance to go down here because I couldn’t find the lift that goes down to the valley. So, I decided to explore other parts of the city.

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander

Gay Panama City – The Nomadic Boys

Author: , January 2nd, 2018

gay Panama City - Nomadic Boys

Panama City is often nicknamed The Dubai of Latin America because of its immense economic growth in recent years and impressive dense skyline. But unlike Dubai, this mighty Latin American metropolis has a far more welcoming gay life, in a country where although culturally conservative, is pushing towards civil union equality for gay couples.

Most will associate Panama City with the famous canal, which is a reason alone to visit. The city is also the gateway to some gorgeous tropical beaches within Panama, like San Blas and further afield – Bocas del Toro.

We stayed in Panama City for a week and found it to be a lot of fun, full of things to do, plenty of trendy bars, but most importantly, we left with a thirst to return. This is our gay guide to Panama City following our experience here during our big Latin America trip.

Gay Panama City

Panama a very conservative Catholic country, with a strong influence from Opus Dei. As such, the gay scene in the country is pretty underground in quite dodgy neighbourhoods, with places frequently closing down/changing. When we visited, there were no gay bars and only one official gay club (see below) in Panama City.

Warning: when going out to a gay club in Panama City, doormen are very strict and will only admit you if you have your original ID, preferably your passport. Most LGBTQ locals we met preferred to have private parties, or attend one of the the monthly gay rooftop parties hosted at venues like the Hard Rock Hotel.

By Stefan Arestis – Full Story at The Nomadic Boys

Gay Panama City Travel Resources

Luxembourg’s Grand Ducal Palace – Keep Calm and Wander

Author: , December 30th, 2017

Grand Ducal Palace - Luxembourg - Keep Calm and Wander

The Grand Ducal Palace in Luxembourg Has Got an impressive facade. Yes, I was impressed. I wasn’t even planning or looking for this place but when I passed it on my way to the museum, I had to sit down on an empty cafe across the street and admire it from my outdoor table. I can also assure you that I was also looking at the marching guards. Promise, I was just looking.

The Grand Ducal Palace is the official residence of the Grand Duke of Luxembourg. In summer (from mid July to August), the palace is open for guided tours. Unfortunately for me, I was there in June, so the it’s the Duke’s loss for not able to meet me.

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander