New York New York!
The Big Apple is arguably the most influential city in the world for the gay community. The place of the influential stonewall riots and giving birth to drag, vogue and the largest ever Gay Pride Festival (held in June, don’t miss it!), this 24-hour metropolis is brimming with stylish hotels, sizzling bars and beaches, and clubs that party round the clock.
Where to Stay
For starters, The OUT NYC is the first gay (and straight-friendly) urban hotel in New York, set in the centre of the most famous gay district, Hell’s Kitchen, and a stone’s throw from Times Square. For a friendly reception on Fire Island, stay at the Chelsea Pines Inn. This laid-back hotel has a Golden Age of Hollywood theme with each bedroom styled after a superstar, and if you’re looking for somewhere with some history, the important and influential Colonial House Inn in Chelsea goes way back with New York’s gay community.
Where to Tan
When you think of New York, it doesn’t usually conjure images of sandy beaches and high tides, but you’d be surprised at what you can find just outside the city limits.
Jacob Riis Park in Brooklyn boasts a golden sandy beach with an old art deco-style bathhouse which now offers regular history exhibits, and if that sounds a little low key, there’s a thriving gay and nudist following too.
If you’re after the Hamptons without the Hamptons’ price tag, Fire Island just off Long Island is home to two vibrant gay resorts, Cherry Grove and Fire Island Pines. You won’t see any cars on the island, but you will see plenty of sunbathing, swimming and partying.
Where to Party
New York is as diverse as they come, and that doesn’t stop at gay bars. From the hub of Hell’s Kitchen to the influential history of the Village, and with Queens and Brooklyn not far away, you’ll have endless choices for your night’s itinerary – the hard part is trying to fit them all in!
- The cute and cosy Cubbyhole is perfect for laid-back drinks with friends beneath its colourful paper lantern-laden ceiling. It also does $2 margarita Tuesdays, so we’re sold.
- The Eagle is New York’s very own gay fetish bar. Home to foot lovers, bondage bears and leather clad cuties, at The Eagle anything goes.
- The famous Barracuda Lounge in Chelsea and its protégé, Industry Bar in Hell’s Kitchen, are classy but comfy, classic but hip, and they’re both served by shirtless men, always a bonus.
- If your style is less RuPaul and more punk rock, head to The Cock or Rockbar, both in the Village. These rock and roll, gay dive bars are home to live music, cheap drinks and plenty of attitude.
- The notorious lesbian sports bar, Ginger’s Bar in Brooklyn, features a spacious beer garden, live sports and a friendly clientele that makes everyone feel welcome – just like New York City itself.