WITH ITS STUNNING SCENERY and increasingly hip reputation, Iceland takes a prominent place on the world stage, and LGBTQ+ travelers are among those taking note of its allure.
A dramatically beautiful island in the North Atlantic, Iceland is graced with glaciers and volcanoes, making its nickname — “the land of fire and ice” — especially appropriate. But part of the destination’s appeal also lies in its friendliness. This year, in fact, marked the 20th anniversary of Reykjavík Pride, the nation’s annual LGBTQ+ pride event, usually taking place in August. And in February, visitors can join additional festivities during Rainbow Reykjavik, a winter pride festival featuring everything from a masquerade ball to a “bingo extravaganza.”
First-time visitors wanting to make the most of their time on the island might want to consider the services of a company like Pink Iceland, an LGBTQ+-owned tour operator and wedding company specializing in creating an array of unique, only-in-Iceland experiences, including queer city tours of Reykjavík, the capital and largest city. Pink Iceland’s LGBTQ+ guides fill visitors in on everything from history to nightlife. And consider another LGBTQ+- friendly tour operator, Hidden Iceland, also well-versed in serving the community.
LGBTQ+ travelers find plenty of welcoming places to enjoy a toast, even though there’s only one full-time gay bar, Kikí Queer Bar, a compact but festive venue in Reykavík. Websites like Gay Ice maintain extensive listings of nightlife and events; and Visit Reykjavík, the city’s tourism office, and Inspired by Iceland, the national tourism office, connect visitors with the information they need.
Iceland’s hotel scene includes an interesting array of unique upscale properties such as the 252-room Hilton Reykjavik Nordica and two members of the Design Hotels consortium: 101 Hotel, a property devoted to eco-conscious luxury, and ION City Hotel, located in a bustling shopping district. New hotels in the works include the Courtyard Reykjavik Keflavik Airport, due to open this month.
An especially interesting hotel choice, the 52-room Hotel Rangá, a member of Small Luxury Hotels of the World, aims to provide a luxury countryside experience in south Iceland. It offers an especially good location to enjoy the northern lights, and the property also customizes its wedding packages for LGBTQ+ couples on request.
Banyan Tree Group recently announced its first-ever expansion into Japan with five new properties across four concepts. The hospitality group’s partnership with Wealth Management Group saw Dhawa Yura and Garrya Nijo Castle launch in June, with two more properties slated to open now through 2026. Another partnership with Terraform Capital sees plans to build Cassia, a property in the ski resort of Niseko.
American Airlines Mobile ID creates a more seamless, touchless travel experience for American Airlines customers with TSA PreCheck. Recently started at Dallas Fort Worth International Airport, AAdvantage members with PreCheck can use Mobile ID at selected checkpoints to verify their identity. AA plans to deploy the technology at Miami (MIA), Phoenix (PHX), Washington, D.C. (DCA) and more later this year.
When American travelers make plans to visit Portugal, Lisbon is usually their first stop.
First opened in 1742 by George William Wilton, a seller of oysters, shrimp and cockles near Haymarket in London, Wiltons continued drawing diners with its delicious food for more than two centuries. This summer, Wiltons celebrates its 280th birthday and its place as one of London’s most beloved fine-dining establishments with a unique dining experience.
PONANT recently announced a new collaboration with Smithsonian Journeys for a series of co-branded sailings for 2023. Led by two Smithsonian Journeys experts, such as an art historian, solar astrophysicist or international relations expert, the 21 itineraries seek to deepen travelers’ immersion and knowledge of different destinations.
From 24-Hour Butler Service to a Sky Pool: Boutique Luxury Awaits at Vista Encantada Spa Resort & Residences in Los Cabos
Set on a seaside bluff overlooking Land’s End in Cabo San Lucas, Vista Encantada Spa Resort & Residences is a Baja paradise specializing in serene vistas and impeccable hospitality, offering a Pacific coast lifestyle with authentic Mexican touches. Guests can now earn a fourth night free at the stunning resort, plus a $100 resort credit, when booking through March 20, for travel through June 15.
In honor of its 20th anniversary, Four Seasons Hotel Prague celebrates the beauty and eternity of this historic city with a limited-time stay offer. The Eternal Beauty offer includes a stay in one of the Premier River rooms, which boasts unique views of Prague, a limousine transfer and breakfast.