REGISTRATION MORE THAN DOUBLED for the sixth annual edition of LGBT Confex, which took place in October 2016 at Mexico City’s World Trade Center. And now organizers are ready to take the event to a brand-new destination: Colombia.
More than 600 people registered for the sixth annual edition of LGBT Confex, Mexico’s largest tourism and business conference focused on the growing LGBTQ segment. For two and a half days, representatives of government tourism offices, hotels, tour operators and other members of the business community networked, made presentations and met the general public. The trade show floor included sizeable displays by sponsors including AT&T, Scotiabank and Mundo Cuervo, as well as exhibitors like Mexico Boutique Hotels, Interjet and the tourism offices of Mexico City and the state of Morelos.
Much discussion at the conference centered on the evolution of the LGBTQ market. As in many parts of the world, the LGBTQ segment in Mexico is becoming increasingly accepted as part of the so-called mainstream market, according to Fernando Castillo, owner, Condesa Haus, a boutique hotel in Mexico City’s chic Condesa district. “The market will be less and less LGBT-specific, because there’s more and more integration,” he said. “For me, it’s not a matter of having to advertise that I accept gay people. I accept everyone. More and more businesses are becoming better integrated.”
Participants in a panel about trends in the hospitality industry echoed that sentiment. “Within the last 10 years there has been a general change in hotel employees, in social channels and marketing,” said Paco Carrera, vice president of sales, Oasis Hotels & Resorts, which markets its Oasis Sens hotel in Cancún to the LGBTQ market.
“The most important thing to perfect is service,” said Saul Lomelí Guerrero, associate director, Neta Comunicación, a marketing company that works with clients including Westin and Aloft hotels. “You could sell incredible service, but if when guests arrive it turns out the service isn’t like how you sold it, that’s a big problem.”
LGBT Confex — which takes place next in Mexico City on Sept. 29–30 — is expanding its horizons. Ruben Sandoval, the event’s CEO and founder, announced plans to debut a similar conference in Bogotá, Colombia, May 26–27. “Colombia is a growing and important destination for LGBT travelers and for doing business,” he said. “We see great opportunities for growth and can’t wait to get together with local and international businesses, tourism experts and travelers in Bogotá.”
All airplane flights begin on the ground. An airport is the starting point, but airspace issues continue to expand from the terrestrial to the aerial. Altitude is no barrier when countries claim sovereignty from the Earth to beyond the stratosphere.
Finding a beachfront Punta Cana all-inclusive resort for all ages can be daunting when you want to take home great memories with loved ones but also experience a sophisticated escape. Now, you can have both thanks to a new resort: Finest Punta Cana.
Flanked by the ski resort-studded Balkan Mountains and situated directly downwind from the fragrant pine forests of the Vitosha mountain, Sofia’s gorgeous landscape and strategic location between Asia and Europe put it at a crossroads where business and pleasure intermingle effortlessly. In recent years Bulgaria’s capital city has ranked as one of the top 10 best places in the world for startup businesses, and the onslaught of new tax exemptions for businesses looking to invest in the country make it an attractive option for many corporations to begin operations within the city.
According to the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Office of Advocacy, small businesses create two-thirds of net new jobs and account for nearly 48 percent of the U.S. private sector workforce. And small- and medium-sized businesses outpace all other sectors as one of the fastest-growing in the United States. InterContinental® Hotels Group (IHG) goes above and beyond to create opportunities for this segment with its IHG® Business Edge program, voted Best Small- to Mid-Sized Business Program in Global Traveler’s 2019 GT Tested Reader Survey awards.
Leovard skincare, formulated by Dr. Sheg Aranmolate, MD, uses natural ingredients to nourish skin, calm irritation, decrease wrinkles, hydrate and soothe — all while sanitizing skin of bacteria. Leovard’s 06 sanitizer is among a line a like-minded products, designed to ease the stress of environmental damage on our skin while cleansing.
Looking for an escape? Anse Chastanet in Saint Lucia is a one-of-a-kind, 49-room resort with views of the Pitons. The property’s Escape Sale offers travelers who book four nights or more before Aug. 31 the chance to save 35 percent on the entire stay. Book by Aug. 31, but the sale is valid for travel through Dec. 19. Rates start at $513 per night.
IHG® Business Edge provides small- to midsized enterprises with benefits and confidence to navigate the evolving business travel environment.
Beer lovers in particular will rejoice with this new offer from The Lion and the Rose Bed and Breakfast in Asheville, North Carolina, and it all starts with a complimentary, icy cold pint upon arrival.