The camera eats first!” insisted the alpha-teen at the table next to me when a waitress arrived and lifted the lid from a bamboo basket of steaming shrimp dumplings, confettied with fragrant green snippets of chive.
Forty fiercely painted fingernails reluctantly reversed direction and withdrew as their queen bee moved her iPhone to catch just the right angle, sliding water glasses and cutlery out of view to frame the impend- ing tastiness just-so. “Come on,” com- plained one of her gaggle, “I’m hungry!”
Richmond, British Columbia, on Lulu Island, is the only place in the world where the visitors’ bureau has officially adapted “The camera eats first” as a tourism slogan, urging locals and out-of-towners alike to flood blogs and social media with mouthwatering imagery.
Success was pretty much guaranteed from the get-go. With the largest Asian population in North America and over 800 restaurants, Richmond provides easy access to a world of alluring, sometimes unfamiliar foods for American travelers without the time, budget, or adventurous- ness to manage trans-pacific travel.
Many gay travelers have been to Richmond without even knowing it. If you’ve ever flown into Vancouver, one of Canada’s most popular LGBT destinations, you actually landed in Richmond, where the “Vancouver” International Airport is located. Just a 30-minute car or public train ride from central Vancouver, its a must-do on any Vancity vacation. And if you’re a culinary adventurer, Richmond easily merits a dedicated long weekend trip of its own. Richmond is ready for its close-up, Mr. Delicious.