A RECENT ADVERTISING CAMPAIGN by the San Francisco Travel Association carried a rather attention-getting line: “San Francisco’s gay neighborhood is called San Francisco.” And that pretty much sums up the appeal of this city by the bay with LGBTQ travelers.
“San Francisco has been ground zero for much of the struggle for LGBTQ rights,” said Joe D’Alessandro, president and CEO, San Francisco Travel Association. “This is the birthplace of the rainbow flag and the AIDS Memorial Quilt. San Francisco was the first city in the nation to recognize same-sex marriage and hosts the largest Pride Festival in the nation. In 1977 Harvey Milk became the first openly gay elected official.”
Indeed, San Francisco has lots to offer LGBTQ travelers. D’Alessandro’s advice to visitors: “First of all, relax. You are in the most gay-friendly city in the world. Here, individuality is celebrated, so experience being in the company of the most diverse and creative community around.”
The San Francisco Travel site offers a variety of LGBTQ itineraries and recommendations to satisfy different types of travelers, from foodies to fashionistas. The most legendary neighborhood for the LGBTQ community, of course, is the Castro, one of the nation’s first true gay neighborhoods. It’s still a great place for a drink or a night out, and it’s also home to the GLBT History Museum, which documents the struggle for equality.
In addition to the annual pride event, which takes place at the end of June, San Francisco also hosts several other popular annual LGBTQ festivals, including the Folsom Street Fair, billed as “the world’s largest leather event,” in September, and the Frameline LGBTQ Film Festival, which brings a variety of noteworthy films to local screens in June.
As the tourism office loves to proclaim, everything in San Francisco is gay-friendly. But if you’re looking for small-scale, gay-owned accommodations, one of the best choices is the Parker Guest House, a 21-room hotel located in the Castro, with lovely Edwardian architecture and tastefully decorated guestrooms. For larger-scale luxury, the Grand Hyatt San Francisco and Hyatt Regency San Francisco are both members of the International Gay & Lesbian Travel Association. San Francisco-based Joie de Vivre Hotels is another good gay-friendly option with several properties in the city, including Hotel Rex, a centrally located Union Square hotel graced with contemporary art, and the hip Phoenix Hotel, located in the Tenderloin district. In San Francisco, as the slogan implies, you’re staying in a gay area no matter where you are.
Bahia Principe Hotels & Resorts invites travelers to celebrate the holidays at any of its properties in Riviera Maya, Mexico. There is no time like the present for you to experience a stay at one of these luxury resorts.
Start planning that long-awaited trip to the island of Ireland. With all travel restrictions now lifted, there has never been a better time to visit.
After a two-year hiatus from in-person sporting and outdoor recreation events, the seaside, car-free town of Las Catalinas in Guanacaste, Costa Rica, recently announced the return of the annual Tri Las Catalinas, an off-road, multisport triathlon, Feb. 15–18.
Much of the global business travel industry has already made sustainable business travel a priority with a focus on reducing emissions and their environmental footprint. But the industry, as well as external stakeholders, such as policymakers, recognize more needs to be done.
Plan a célébration spéciale this holiday season with a stay at a historic French chateau in the Loire Valley. If pipers piping and dancers dancing are part of your dream holiday experience, set your compass for Château de Chambord, where 100 twinkling Christmas trees set a festive tone for Renaissance music and dancing, storytelling, performances, workshops, themed activities and more. Guests can sip mulled wine and nibble on sweet indulgences, or peruse the shops for authentic, artisanal Chambord products crafted from the estate’s own natural resources.
For the 12th consecutive year, Global Traveler recognizes the best of the best in the industry, naming 2022’s Airline of the Year and Hotel of the Year.
IHG® Hotels & Resorts certainly has a lot to celebrate, starting with an incredible growth story. Over the past five years, IHG has acquired or launched six new brands: Six Senses® Hotels Resorts Spas, Regent® Hotels & Resorts, Vignette™ Collection, voco™ hotels, avid® hotels and Atwell Suites™. Most recently, IHG reached an important milestone with its 6,000th open hotel. The company looks to further expand its portfolio by 30 percent with 1,800 hotels in the development pipeline, with significant focus on growth in the luxury segment where IHG is positioned as one of the top two hotel chains.
What a year 2022 has been for travel! It’s not an understatement to say travel rebounded and surged following the pandemic, and airlines, hotels, travel providers and more are ready and waiting to serve the masses returning to the beautiful art of traveling. As such, we celebrate and award those who do it best as we announce the 2022 winners of the GT Tested Reader Survey awards, our 19th year honoring the best of the best in the world of travel. Our countdown to year No. 20 begins now.