Starlight Pines B&B – Flagstaff Gay Bed and Breakfast

Author: , November 28th, 2018

Starlight Pines B&B

Imagine stepping back in time to a place in the Arizona west where crackling fires welcome you, spacious guest room accommodations, and luxurious, claw foot bathtubs await you! Imagine staying at Starlight Pines Bed and Breakfast, a Victorian style house nested among the pines at the foot of Mt. Elden, in Flagstaff, Arizona.

Make us your home base while visiting the Grand Canyon (a bit more than 1 hour from our Inn) and Sedona (40 minutes south of our Inn) and many other area attractions within a 2 hour ride of our Bed and Breakfast!

You’ll love the old-fashioned romance of the antique-filled rooms, Tiffany lamps, complimentary beverages, free Wi-Fi, free parking, the full gourmet breakfast and the friendliness of your hosts, Richard & Michael, and their special Shih Tzu friends, Moo Shu and Taz – and our newest addition, Baxter our Puggle!

See the Starlight Pines B&B Expanded Listing on Purple Roofs Here

AREA Gay Friendly Bed and Breakfasts, Hotels, and Vacation Rentals

Hiking the Vermilion Cliffs – Free Wheel Drive

Author: , November 28th, 2018

Vermilion Cliffs - Free Wheel Drive

This area of Arizona and Utah is a hot spot for Slot Canyons. What is a Slot Canyon? Slot Canyons are narrow passages formed by rivers that are now mostly dried up. Slot canyons are significantly deeper than they are wide. Hikers can follow the dried river beds that pass through the canyons. Sometimes the canyons can be very narrow, filled with debris, or can fill with water in a flash flood. Meaning they can be dangerous and hikers must be prepared and not go solo.

The tragic movie 127 Hours was about a solo hiker exploring slot canyons in this area of the country. The most famous slot canyon right now is Antelope Canyon near Page, AZ. Antelope Canyon is on the Navajo Reservation and access to this slot canyon is run by people who live on the reservation.

Unfortunately, because this canyon has become so popular on Instagram the demand to see it has skyrocketed and the reservation charges a lot of money to see it. We’re not saying we’re mad at the people who run the sight, it’s not public land and they have every right to make money off of tourists. It’s just for the moment seeing Antelope Canyon was out of our price range. So, what are we to do?

Good thing this area of the country is packed full of similar if not equally as beautiful other slot canyons. This is how we became introduced to Vermilion Cliffs National Monument. This National Monument is huge! It’s also very different from any other National Monument we have been to yet.

By Laura and Camrin – Full Story at Free Wheel Drive

Northern Arizona Gay Travel Resources

 

See the Grand Canyon in Two Days! – Free Wheel Drive

Author: , October 24th, 2018

Grand Canyon - Free Wheel Drive

The Grand Canyon is in Northern Arizona just north of Flagstaff. This park is massive and beautiful and it houses one of the most amazing wonders of the world. We only had two full days to spend at the park, so we packed in as much as we could. The weather was chilly with patches of rain, but we had a blast exploring the Grand Canyon National Park!

We stuck to the South Rim area, the most popular area. The South Rim has the hotels, large visitor center, and a shuttle system to help one get around. We asked around for hiking recommendations and the two trials that had a lot of feed back were The Bright Angle and South Kaibob Trails.With the weather being a little chilly and potential for rain we figured it was a good idea to have places to hang out inside. For it being our first time at the Grand Canyon the South Rim is a great place to start.

When driving North towards the South Rim of the Grand Canyon, you’ll spot Humphrey’s peak over Flagstaff. Arizona’s tallest peak. As we entered the Flagstaff area the barren landscape of shrubs and badlands turns to pine trees and snow.

We first arrived at the park late in the afternoon. This was a chance for us to find our way around, figure out our to do list, and get our first glimpse of the canyon.

By Laura Dierbeck – Full Story at Free Wheel Drive

Arizona Lesbian Travel Resources

 

Tombstone & the Saguaro National Park – Free Wheel Drive

Author: , October 18th, 2018

Tombstone

After our stay at the Mushroom Farm, we made our way to Tucson which also happens to be next door to Saguaro National Park. The short drive North took us through a very dry landscape. The earth is a dull brown, the horizon is unclear in a haze of dust, and the sky is a bright blue with no clouds in sight. The rolling hills and mountains in the distance break up the monotony of the desert. The highlight of this drive is stopping and seeing the tourist trap, Tombstone.

Tombstone was one of the last frontier towns of the West that boomed when silver was discovered nearby. At the height of the town’s popularity in the late 1800’s about 14,000 people lived here. The Gunfight at the O.K Corral was a shootout between outlaw cowboys and the town’s lawmen. It was a time when the West was a place of lawlessness and wildness. Today the town has a kept up the historic buildings, performs several reenactments, and is overall a trap for tourists.

We only stayed for about an hour. We ate some ice cream. Sadly, we didn’t stay for the reenactments.

By Camrin LaFond – Full Story at Free Wheel Drive

Southwest New Mexico Gay Travel Resources

 

Petrified Forest National Park – Free Wheel Drive

Author: , August 25th, 2018

Petrified Forest National Park - Free Wheel Drive

After a brief stop in Pheonix where we were able to meet up with our friend, Kirsten, and celebrate St. Patricks day we were off to the lesser known Petrified Forest National Park. The drive to get there was lovely. Through the mountains of the Tonto National Forest, and the high plains of Arizona.

Tucked in the Eastern side of Arizona, between the Navajo and Apache reservations, is the “smallish” park, Petrified Forest NP. At an elevation of 5,000 feet, it is a dramatically different landscape compared to the tall cactus filled Southern portion of Arizona. The landscape here is short sage bushes, prairie grasses, and colorful badland like hill formations.

The two days we visited the weather was chilly and windy, but still, this park is beautiful, colorful, and we learned a ton about geology and what a petrified forest is. Also, we found the park very easy to explore. With two entrances on opposite sides of the park and a 26mile long road connecting the two sides, it is a very easy park to navigate.

Along the drive are several established hiking trails and scenic viewpoints to break up the drive. One to two days is all you really need to see everything. We saw most of everything in less than two days.

By Camrin LaFond – Full Story at Free Wheel Drive

Arizona Gay Travel Resources

Catalina Park Inn Bed & Breakfast – Tucson Gay Bed & Breakfast

Author: , March 19th, 2018

Catalina Park Inn Bed & Breakfast - Tucson Gay Bed & Breakfast

Catalina Park Inn Bed & Breakfast opened in 1994 by Mark Hall and Paul Richard who continue to welcome guests visiting Tucson in their 21st season. The home was built in 1927 and retains many of the original details including all the beautiful Mexican mahogany woodwork. There is original artwork throughout the inn and surrounding desert gardens.

Leave your car at the inn and walk or take Tucson’s new Sunlink Streetcar light rail to the many restaurants, bars, and shops of Fourth Avenue, Congress Street and University Boulevard. When you are ready to tackle the many other sights to see in Tucson and the surrounding area access is a cinch as the inn just a mile from the highway.

If you are searching for an inn that offers a quiet and relaxed atmosphere and not a “scene”, Catalina Park Inn may just be the ticket. The vibe is quiet and low key. Each of our five guest rooms has a private bath and many amenities including free Wi-Fi, Flat panel TV, DVD players, CD/AM/FM/iPod dock stereo, plush robes and super comfortable beds with high quality linens. On the main floor there is large living room for guests, and a Butlers Pantry with a guest fridge, glassware, ice, and a DVD library.

The inn’s clientele is varied and at the full breakfast served each morning in the dining room you might meet the parents of a UofA student, a guest lecturer or straight and gay tourists from anywhere in the world. It all adds up for lively and fun breakfast conversation.

Plan to stay in Tucson for a few days if you are able. There is much to see and the area offers magnificent natural beauty. Just a few of the sights you will want to check out are: The Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, Sabino Canyon, The Saguaro National Monuments East and West, Mission San Xavier, Kartchner Cavers, Tombstone, Bisbee, The Pima Air and Space Museum, The Center for Creative Photography, Tohono Chul Park, Kitt Peak National Observatory, Mount Lemmon and so much more!

See the Catalina Park Inn Bed & Breakfast Expanded Listing on Purple Roofs Here

Tucson Gay Friendly Bed and Breakfasts, Hotels, and Vacation Rentals

Best Western Plus Inn of Sedona – Sedona Gay Friendly Hotel

Author: , February 23rd, 2018

Best Western Plus Inn of Sedona - Sedona Gay Friendly Hotel

The Best Western Inn Plus Inn of Sedona is a beautiful home base for your Sedona adventure.

The hotel’s award-winning, terraced design takes full advantage of its ridge top location. With broad promenade decks along both sides of the property, guests can enjoy 360 degree red rock views without leaving the hotel.

Take in the views on the sunrise side as you enjoy a hot breakfast each morning.

In the evening stroll along the west side and take in an amazing red rock sunset right from the deck.

One of the first class amenities included in your stay, the “About Town” shuttle takes all the guesswork out of getting around Sedona. Climb in and relax – our friendly and knowledgeable staff will get you where you want to go in Sedona.

Go ahead, enjoy a glass of wine with dinner. Your ride back to our Sedona hotel is only a phone call away. We are the only hotel in Sedona that offers this service, and at the Best Western PLUS Inn of Sedona, we’re proud to be the leader in red rock hospitality. Many guests park their cars when they arrive and don’t get back into them until after check-out. Now that’s a relaxing vacation!

The energy of Sedona’s famous vortices and the spectacular natural beauty of Sedona’s red rocks combine to make Sedona, Arizona one the “Top 100 Places to Visit in the World” according to Trip Advisor. But red rocks aren’t the only attraction!

From Jeep tours to swimming tigers, hiking to train rides and of course amazing local art and shopping, there’s something for everyone in Sedona and the Verde Valley. But more than anything, you just have to experience the magical feel of this wonderful place. To show respect for the surroundings, and to help protect their natural beauty, the Best Western PLUS Inn of Sedona is a certified “Green Hotel”.

Are you interested in the famous Vortices? Well, the Airport Mesa Vortex is just across the street.

Want to know more about the history of the area or maybe just find out about the local flora and fauna? The complimentary Concierge Service can assist you in making the most of your time in Sedona, your way.

Whether you’re looking for dinner reservations or want to book a tour in a Pink Jeep, they can help take the hassle out of planning your itinerary. For a customized experience call our Concierge Desk 7 days a week to get personalized service to help you create your dream Sedona vacation.

If you plan on traveling with your best friend, and they happen to have 4 legs, don’t worry, this hotel gives new meaning to the term “pet friendly”. With a welcome gift at check-in and a list of local pet friendly restaurants for your reference, your furry best friend will be sitting pretty.

Sedona’s famous red rocks are waiting! A visit to Sedona can be anything you want to make it. We hope you make it memorable.

See the Best Western Plus Inn of Sedona Expanded Listing on Purple Roofs Here

Sedona Gay Friendly Bed and Breakfasts, Hotels, and Vacation Rentals

Queer Phoenix – New Now Next

Author: , August 10th, 2017

Phoenix - Pixabay

Phoenix gets more than 330 days of sunshine per year. I live in Pittsburgh, which is officially one of the most overcast cities in America. So when I was presented with an opportunity to spend six days in Phoenix at the start of spring, I jumped at the chance.

The Phoenix area also sees highs of well over 100 degrees Fahrenheit in the summer — but it’s that delicious, famously “dry heat” that evaporates the sweat right off your skin. Coming off the end of a long, snowy winter, the desert heat was nothing short of transformative for me — it offered the perfect excuse to wear as little clothing as possible, find my way to a pool during the day, and keep an ice cold drink in my hand after dark.

This queer, sunshine-loving traveler’s guide covers when to go, where to stay, where to eat and drink, and what to do to make the most of your adventure in greater Phoenix.

Go to Queer Phoenix

The Sonoran Desert offers sun and heat most of the year, but November through April generally offer the most temperate weather — clear skies and average temperatures in the high 60s, 70s, and low 80s. That said, you may want to avoid going in March — there’s a huge spring training baseball event, so airfare and hotel prices skyrocket and everything is more crowded than usual. April is LGBT Pride month in Phoenix, and the city’s Pride organization goes all out with events, including a festival, parade, and pageant.

Stay in Queer Phoenix

Both Scottsdale and Phoenix (including downtown Phoenix, for those who prefer to be amid the hustle and bustle) have no shortage of LGBT-friendly accommodations in every price range. Scottsdale, Phoenix’s immediate neighbor, reportedly has more spas per capita than any other US city—and many of them are among the most scenic in the world, thanks in large part to the stunning desert views available from their picture windows and soaking tubs.

By Kristina Marusic – Full Story at New Now Next

Phoenix Gay Travel Resources

Sedona’s Tlaquepaque

Author: , July 13th, 2017

Tlaquepaque entrance

We just spent a few days in Sedona – my first time there since I was about fourteen – and I gotta say, I love this little town. There’s so much art here, both in galleries and shops and out in the public sphere.

Tlaquepaque - Statue

Sedona has two main shopping districts – there’s downtown, which has a few gems but is kinda filled with tourist traps selling t-shirts and cheap pottery.

But there is a great place to find an amazing array of quality souvenirs, from affordable kitchenware up to high-end sculpture and on-canvas art. It’s called Tlaquepaque – say it with me: Tah-Laa-Kwe-Packeee” – and it’s a gorgeous outdoor shopping center on the southern end of town.

Tlaquepaque - Plaza

Tlaquepaque is built in a Spanish Mission style, and it’s a pleasure to just wander the grounds, taking in the art and spending time sitting at the many fountains on a hot day and trailing your hand in the cool water.

Tlaquepaque Plaza

There are so many great places here.

If you get here at lunchtime, start out at the Oak Creek Brewery – the food is good, and the second-floor location offers some gorgeous red rock views through the picture windows.

Tlaquepaque - Oak Creek Brewery

Tlaquepaque - Oak Creek Brewery View

A short list of our favorite stores here: Cucina Sedona (really cool kitchen stuff); Esteban’s Pottery (OMG – we so almost came home with some of their gorgeous work); and The Inner Eye Gallery (just really cool art).

Tlaquepaque - Esteban's

Esteban’s

Tlaquepaque - The Inner Eye Gallery

The Inner Eye Gallery

We spent about an hour at Tlaquepaque, but I could have wandered around all afternoon.

A must-see while you are in Sedona. Here are some more examples of the public art that litters the place, and some of the nice views – enjoy!

 

Tlaquepaque - Art

Tlaquepaque - Art

Tlaquepaque - Art

Tlaquepaque - Art

Tlaquepaque - Art

Coffee Pot Restaurant – An Iconic Sedona Experience

Author: , July 10th, 2017

Coffee Pot Restaurant - Sedona

Coffee Pot Restaurant - 101 Omelettes

On our last morning in Sedona, we stopped by the Coffee Pot Restaurant – an iconic breakfast cafe along one of the main highways in town. Opened in the 1950’s, this little cafe still does a brisk business, in part because of its famous menu of 101 omelettes.

There really are a hundred and fifty different choices. My favorite? Jelly, Peanut Butter and Banana. You can see the whole list here.

The restaurant is named for one of the city’s famous red rock formations, of which there are many. You can see part of it here, over the top of the building – it looks like one of those old-fashioned coffee percolators:

Coffee Pot Restaurant - View

The Coffee Pot Restaurant is cute, and it’s filled with lots of great Southwestern art wherever you look. The food is hearty and affordable – I had their Huevos Rancheros (ranch eggs) and they were fantastic.

Coffee Pot Restaurant

Want to take something home with you to remember Sedona by? You can check out any of Sedona’s many great galleries – we’ll cover the Tlaquepaque shopping center in our next post. But if you just want a quick souvenir, stop by the Coffee Pot Restaurant’s gift store for something a little more affordable and kitschy. I found a cyte metal gecko hook that’s now hanging over my desk in our office.

Coffee Pot Restaurant - Gift Shop

The Coffee Pot Restaurant is a great little place to eat, hang out, and shop in Sedona. if you have the time, we recommend having breakfast here at least once while you’re in town!