GNetwork360 in Buenos Aires
Photo: © GNETWORK360
BUENOS AIRES IS ONE of the highest-profile destinations in South America for LGBTQ travelers, so it’s no surprise it makes an ideal host city for GNetwork360, one of the region’s biggest conferences focused on LGBTQ tourism.
The 10th edition, which took place in August at the Alvear Palace Hotel, registered about 1,500 participants from 18 countries for four days of workshops, meetings and networking events.
The conference is the brainchild of Pablo De Luca and Gustavo Noguera, who have worked to build the conference into a must-attend networking and educational event for anyone interested in Latin American tourism.
Looking back at 10 successful editions of GNetwork360, “it’s incredible how much it’s changed,” De Luca said. “Growth has been fast. Since starting, we’ve attracted 10,000 people with various topics related to gay tourism.”
The annual event covers various segments with different themes. The first day featured a corporate leadership forum, targeting issues like corporate policies and human resources. This year, the segment was co-hosted by the U.S.-based National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce, with the organization’s CEO Chance Mitchell and the CEO of Miami-Dade Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce Steve Adkins among the presenters.
The second day focused on travel, complete with an LGBTQ travel expo with a host of tour operators, tourism offices, airlines and other suppliers. The third day focused on marketing and communications.
Noguera noted GNetwork360 aims to address the most important issues facing the industry today. “The first day includes how to be inclusive of transgender people in the corporate environment,” he said. “That’s a very important theme. On the second day, we focus on how millennials travel, and how to capture the attention of the Asian market — especially China — and how to use digital media. Another big topic is training for LGBT events in South America, like OutGames,” a major international LGBTQ sporting event.
Among the sponsors and participants are the Argentina Ministry of Tourism, the Buenos Aires Tourism Board, IBM, Delta Air Lines and the International Gay and Lesbian Travel Association.
Attendees also got to view one of the latest examples of the destination’s gay-friendly attitude. This year, Buenos Aires became the first city in the world to name a subway station after an LGBTQ rights activist.