Category Archives: California
EDEN Pride Weekend San
Francisco will be a smashing weekend filled with up to 12 events at
three venues and one secret location for lesbian, bisexual and
transgender individuals and their friends June 27 – 30, 2013.
EDEN Pride Events is
gearing up for EDEN’s weekend during San Francisco Pride by bringing
events back to familiar venues and adding new dance clubs.
“Each year EDEN brings
together the hottest venues in the city for our attendees. This year is
no different,” said Christine De La Rosa, founder and producer of EDEN
Pride Events. “We are bringing back the Factory and the Supperclub from
previous years while adding to the mix the Mezzanine.”
That’s why in 2013
EDEN Pride Events launched the EDEN LGBTQ Youth Foundation, where 100%
of the proceeds from this year’s EDEN Pride Events season will go toward
supporting LGBTQ youth. Eden in the Bay.
GET ALL THE DETAILS FOR EVENTS HOTELS AND MORE ONLINE
WANT FREE TICKETS??
Out In The Vineyard is an experiential Wine Country Tour and Event
company promoting positive LGBT lifestyles and offering exclusive,
luxury itineraries and events to the discriminating gay and lesbian
traveler and our friends.
Itineraries are designed to provide intimate and exclusive wine
country experiences and are strictly limited to small groups of no more
than twenty guests.
has the unique ability to offer our guests exclusive access to some of
the world’s best wineries, restaurants and accommodations catering to
the LGBT lifestyle and bringing you The Very Best of Our Wine Country.
Conceived by Mark Vogler, a former internet
executive and wine industry veteran & founded with Gary Saperstein, a
Sonoma local with over 25 years of experience in the high end wine
country hospitality, Out In The Vineyard promotes positive, social LGBT
lifestyles and offers the best of what the Valley has to offer through
exclusive, luxury Wine Country itineraries, featuring world-class
restaurants, exclusive winery tours, and dining experiences at private
estates. Out in the Vineyard tours are curated by local LGBT insiders,
creating personalized, exclusive experiences, conveniently pre-planned
to cancel out any stress and promote purely relaxing, entertaining
experiences for guests.
Out in the Vineyard also regularly hosts special events, including The Big Gay Wine Train, and the upcoming “Gay Wine Weekend”
in the Sonoma Valley: 3 days of wine events for the LGBT community from
June 14-16, including winemaker dinners, tours and a spectacular
charity event, Twilight T Dance, to be held at the 150-acre vineyard of
Atwood Ranch in the heart of the Valley of the Moon, with 100% of the
funds raised benefitting Face to Face, the Sonoma County AIDS Network.
Gay Wine Weekend will feature the best of what the Valley has to offer,
including gourmet institutions like the girl & the fig, El Dorado
Kitchen, Joseph Phelps Winery, B Wise Winery and more. Find out more OUT IN THE VINEYARDS
first Gay Days Anaheim California in 1998 attracted about 2,500 people.
event attracts over 30,000 guests to the Disneyland Resort each year!
Every October this event happens – and this year the dates will be October 4-6, 2013. People come in from all over to enjoy this awesome 3 day event!
Can’t wait for Gay Days Anaheim this October? April 13 is sort of a “Mini
Gay Day” at Disneyland—a less formal event than the big October weekend – but still fun. Schedule of activities will be posted soon on the Gay Days Anaheim website!
Anaheim and Orange County is amazing place to vacation. If you’re going to Disneyland, you MUST add on days at the beginning or the end to explore this beautiful area.
Popularly recognized as “The OC,” this world-class visitor destination
is the center of Southern California fun . OC’s second largest city is Anaheim – the perfect
starting point for your OC adventures.
Besides the amazing Disneyland and California Adventure park, the Anaheim Orange County area has so much to see and do. Arts and Culture, a variety of attractions, awesome restaurants and unbelievable shopping options. Not to mention romantic and picturesque beaches. One after the other!
Gay Days – or any day! Anaheim Orange County!
PLUS – Read More Here about Anaheim.
Internationally renowned artist Leo Villareal has been busy in San Francisco, using the Bay Bridge
West Span as a frame, for a five-hundred-feet high and 1.8-mile-wide
installation will comprise more than 25,000 LED lights, making it the
world’s largest ever light sculpture.
TONIGHT is the unveiling!
The installation will light up
the Bay Area for two years, with an estimated 50 million people expected
to view the display in that time. – Whats happens after two years? I don’t know.
According to the project’s webpage, “patterns of weather, the water
and the traffic of cars, ships and wildlife” will all be used as
inspiration for creating Villareal’s software algorithms, ensuring that
each light pattern is unique and never repeated.
“People’s perception of what the piece is will be highly subjective,
no two people may see the same thing,” the artist said. “But there’ll
still be this point of connection between many, many people.”
Villarael said he hopes that the “monumental” piece of public art
will inspire artists in the Bay Area, while local businesses will no
doubt be hoping the project will fulfill its promise to add around $97
million to the local economy.
When it’s cold outside…
head somewhere warm!!
Eureka! That’s California’s motto, which means “I have found it.”
Whatever it is you’re looking for, you can surely find it here. A
California vacation offers unparalleled diversity. Whether traveling to
Southern California or Northern California, the diversity of culture,
scenic beauty and things to do, makes travel in California unlike any
other place in the world. California epitomizes a place where anything
can happen – and usually does. Californians revel in their quirks and
contradictions, and are proud to live in one of the most diverse and
exciting places in the world.
Anaheim and Orange County offers probably the greatest array of shop-till-you-drop stores! Anything and everything you could possibly want or desire can be found in Anaheim or the surrounding areas!
The success of the center brought rapid expansion: an additional wing with Bullock’s in 1973, I. Magnin in 1977, Nordstrom in 1978, and Saks Fifth Avenue in 1979. The opening of the Nordstrom store is considered a seminal event as it was the first Nordstrom store outside of the Pacific Northwest and marked the West Coast and later the nationwide expansion of its chain. From 1986-thru the 90’s the plaza continued to grow at leaps and bounds.
South Coast Plaza is still privately held by the Segerstrom family (and the second largest family-owned center in the United States behind the Mall of America), and so is one of the few shopping centers in the United States that have not been purchased by a Real Estate Investment Trust/REIT.
About 15 minutes away are the Outlets at Orange
The Outlets at Orange is Orange County’s only outlet shopping destination. This beautiful open-air center is home to more than 120 outlet and value retail stores including Saks Fifth Avenue OFF 5TH, Last Call by Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom Rack, DKNY, Calvin Klein, Tommy Hilfiger, Levi’s Outlet and more.
Lucky Strike Lanes offers a unique, upscale bowling experience and Dave & Buster’s provides fun for all ages. Enjoy a movie at our huge AMC 30 (YES 30!) Theatre with IMAX. Looking for some much-needed relaxation? Spend a day at the Burke Williams Day Spa.
No visit to Orange County, California is complete without a day at Disneyland, located only a few minutes away from The Outlets at Orange. Other attractions located within 5 miles of the mall include the Anaheim Convention Center, the hands-on Discovery Science Center, The City National Grove of Anaheim concert venue, baseball games at Angels Stadium, and Anaheim Ducks hockey games at the Honda Center. Knott’s Berry Farm is located just a short 15 minute drive away up the I-5 freeway.
GAY DAYS ANAHEIM happens every October. The
first Gay Days Anaheim in 1998 attracted about 2,500 people. Today the
eventweekend attracts over 30,000 guests to the Disneyland Resort each year!
Pretty amazing. What was once a small one-day gathering has become a
full weekend event with parties, gatherings, group photos, scavenger
hunts, private meals, and much more! – *INSIDERS SCOOP – there is a MINI GAY DAYS April 13th this year. Just one day. A low key mix-in with a whole bunch of LGBTQ folks! Just buy a ticket and show up in something red or fabulous!
see also Anaheim Packing District
When I first visited California about 20 years ago, I was living in Michigan at the time. I bought something at a store and used a credit card and had to show my ID. The salesman said, “Oh! I am from Michigan too! I moved here 5 years ago!”
When I asked why he loved it, he said, “Look around you….this is God’s country! It’s like heaven!” And he was right.
His words stick in my head every time I visit. California is the most beautiful state I have ever visited. From North to South, California has so many beautiful options.
California’s diverse geography ranges from the Pacific Coast in the west, to the Sierra Nevada mountains in the east – from the Redwood–Douglas-fir forests of the northwest, to the Mojave Desert areas in the southeast. The center of the state is dominated by Central Valley, a major agricultural area. California contains both the highest and lowest points in the contiguous United States (Mount Whitney and Death Valley), and has the 3rd longest coastline of all states (after Alaska and Florida).
With seven miles of coastline, Laguna Beach is home to more than
20 coves and beaches (all with public access), you can play in the
water, build sandcastles or explore pristine tidepools. They are a
protected marine preserve, so no motorized boats are allowed in or out
of their waters, which keeps the tidepools fresh and teeming with sealife
you can observe at low tide.
Eco-Tours abound from observing dolphins and whales up close, sea kayaking above the colorful garibaldi, or taking a wildlife & beach tour to check out sea lions, seals and
tidepool life. There is also a docent-led tour of the Pacific Marine Mammal Center, the only marine mammal rescue and rehabilitation center
of its kind in Orange County.
Laguna Beach became a popular tourist destination in the late 1800s. Today, visitors can catch a glimpse of Laguna’s past by strolling the downtown and stopping at local landmarks, many dating back to the early 20th century. Laguna was a rich artists’ colony and a seaside retreat many Hollywood stars called home.
This is probably my favorite part of Laguna Beach. The downtown is quaint yet contemporary. Discover their walkable downtown village. Eclectic fashion boutiques,
gourmet kitchen and home furnishing stores, art galleries and jewelry
shops offer unique one-of-a-kind finds and gifts. And the first Thursday of the month, they do a gallery walk. First Thursday Art Walk goes year round. The next one is January 3rd, 2013! This free and art educational event is funded by member galleries, lodging establishments, and the City of Laguna Beach. Browse more than 100 art galleries and 72 pieces of
public art. Pick up a self-guided tour map of the artworks at the Laguna
Beach Visitors Center. The map delineates where public sculptures, art
in public places and artist-designed benches are located throughout
town, many of which were created by local artists. You can also tour
working artists’ studios in Laguna Canyon.
Twenty-thousand acres of wilderness attract hikers, bikers, bird watchers, backpackers and Plein Air painters, all of whom find beauty in the area’s hills, cliffs and marine sanctuaries. Hiking,
biking and equestrian trails are located throughout the protected reserves.
Be an artist for a day! Sign up for a Sawdust Studio Art Class where you’ll create a unique art piece to wear or to share, in just one session. Offered every Friday and Saturday at 10am and 2pm, each two-hour workshop is led by a professional artist. Choose from jewelry,
ceramics, pottery or fused glass. Or try an “Art of Tidepooling and Watercolor Journaling” class guided by an art instructor, where you’ll explore tidepools and craft your own watercolor journal of the tiny creatures you observed.
Each summer, Laguna’s renowned art festivals
take place: Art-A-Fair, Festival of Arts and Sawdust Art Festival. ART, ART and more ART!! Meet local artists, take in artist demonstrations and classes, and purchase
unique works of art. The world-famous Pageant of the Masters uses
volunteers, costumes and elaborate sets to create living pictures, and
magically transforms cast members into famous works of art.
Take a cooking class at Laguna Culinary Arts.
Located in Laguna Canyon, Home Chef Classes are held in the evenings;
there’s a weekend program of half- and full-day classes exploring
specific techniques and culinary styles; and a three-day, mid-week class
for beginners. It also features a gourmet Cheese and Wine Shop/Cafe and
Tasting Room offering 350 different wine labels and 90 different
cheeses from around the world, as well as olives, charcuterie, imported
oils & vinegars, breads & crackers, cookbooks and cooking accessories.
See why I LOVE this place?!
Find out more and plan your next California getaway!
towns, family fun, gay-friendly vibrant boardwalks and cool breezes in the warm
California sun. The Orange County coastline is comprised of six BEACH CITIES, each offering its own unique brand of the Southern California
experience. A day on the coast can include surf lessons, a romantic walk
on the beach or a nighttime bonfire cookout. What else could you ask for?!
We were in Anaehim for Gay Days Anaheim 4 years ago. (What a fantastic party weekend that was!) So we went back just a few weeks ago, and I wondered what could really changed in 4 years, with the recession most parts of the US have dealt with. In Anaheim, they ask, WHAT RECESSION? Nothing paused here for a moment and building bigger and better moved full speed ahead!
$1 billion+ in renovations have been added to the California Adventures Park with the new addition of CARS LAND and 10 rides are being closed and refurbished, as we speak in the 2 parks.
But what is most exciting, is the new developments happening all around Anaheim. There is so much to see and do off Disney property now as well. Anaheim is turning back the hands of time, getting into deep values, enriching the community through the arts, providing a space for the production for local culinary artisans, embracing farm-to-table foods, the slow-food movement, vintage Americana, a focus on native food and health and allowing the public to watch firsthand the processes of baking, beer brewing cooking and more. Small business ownerships and no big box stores allowed here! Embracing the history and heritage of Anaheim.
The Downtown Center Street Anaheim is located at the heart of Downtown Anaheim and is surrounded by City Hall, newly built lofts, and the historic Carnegie Library and
Muzeo Museum, the Gehry-designed Anaheim ice rink, and the historic neighborhoods of the Colony District. You will find an awesome collection of like-minded individuals and businesses focused on a common goal. Old values, personal service, shop local with handmade goods or have a haircut, shave (Imperial Barber Products) and a beer (Barbeer) . Homemade culinary treats with a distinctive cultural legacy. (Healthy Junk and Gypsy Den ). Everything old, is new again!
With new and ongoing development projects (including the restoration of of the Packing House &
Packard Showroom by Lab Holding LLC*), Downtown Anaheim is enjoying a revitalization that will reestablish it as the center of Historic Anaheim and an important Orange County destination.
Coming soon (completion of project projected for March 2013) Anaheim residents and visitors alike will be treated to an amazing, new communal gathering place in the heart of downtown Anaheim, complete with refurbished historic structures and new exciting uses.
The Packing District, located at the intersection of Anaheim Blvd and Santa Ana Street, includes the restored Packard Car Showroom, an outdoor marketplace and the restored citrus Packing House. The Packing District designs and architecture will pay homage to the master illustrators and printers of early Californian fruit crates and union organizations.
One of the few remaining packing houses from the agricultural era for which Orange County is named, the Anaheim Citrus Packing House is a landmark in both County and City history. Built in 1919 at the edge of downtown Anaheim and along the Southern Pacific rail line, the Packing House was a hub of commerce for the area. Local farmers arrived to unload trucks of freshly picked citrus to begin the process of washing, grading and eventual packing into wooden crates. Once completed, the crated and labeled citrus would be loaded onto rail cars parked on the side of the building to be shipped nationwide.
The restored Packing House will serve as a culinary center, planned as a food hall reminiscent of the great public markets of South America and Europe, that brings together artisan food producers and purveyors in a public market type setting serving as a resource for the neighborhood (daily food production) and a community gathering space (restaurants and entertainment).
The bright 42,000-square-foot historic warehouse will feature communal dining, railroad car patios, an indoor music venue and unique culinary offerings. The two level Packing House will have a large central atrium with communal dining surrounded by cafes and kiosks of varying sizes as well as outdoor picnic gardens and a building-length dining porch looking out to the outdoor marketplace, Farmers’ Park.
Farmer’s Park is an outdoor marketplace slated to host weekend farmer’s markets, outdoor concerts and movies, and festivals. Farmers Park will serve as picnic grounds for the entire project. Two small cafes sit in the park for quick takeout to enjoy in the gardens.
Farmers Park is a front porch for the community; a space that the existing neighbors will utilize as an amenity, and a welcome to those who will be visiting the adjacent Packing House and Packard Showroom.
The Packard Building is one of a handful of historic commercial buildings remaining in a district that has seen tremendous new urban development in the past decade. Contrasted with this new higher density development, buildings such as the Packard Building, the newly restored Carnegie Library and the citrus Packing House are quickly becoming the jewels of downtown Anaheim.
This mission revival building was built in 1925 and was designed with an open and light filled interior typical of car showrooms. After decades of various automobile uses and miscellaneous modifications, the Packard Building is now being restored to its original 1920’s glory. The Packard Showroom is home to the Anaheim Brewery (where past has a presence) and Umami Burger (named Burger of the Year!) and the two merchants share a large landscaped beer garden. All of this is OPEN NOW and packing people in. The final phase should be unveiled in March 2013!
In the coming months we will take you to more of Anaheim and the OC including the breath taking Laguna Beach, Newport Beach, Crystal Cove State Park and more!
Anaheim and Orange County info
Anabella Hotel Just steps from Disneyland!
Great property and pricing!
Segestrom Center for the Arts
South Coast Plaza –
The most AMAZING luxury shopping complex in the US
Laguna Beach Visitors info
*LAB Holding – In 1993, LAB holding invented the “anti-mall”, to meet the demands of urban shoppers dissatisfied with the homogenization of conventional malls. In his his quest to hipsterize OC retail, Shaheen Sadeghi has built
quirkily beautiful properties and gained more than a few critics.
His latest extreme building makeover: the overhaul of Center Street in downtown Anaheim.
In the coming months, the palm-tree-lined, marble-and-teal shopping
plaza recently vacated by a jewelry-repair shop, discount-clothing
boutique and travel agency promoting cruise vacations will be
transformed into a 1940s-themed destination hub, packed with
meticulously conceptualized shops that nod to the city’s past.
States, you’ll find yourself “Walking on Sunshine” in Anaheim and Orange
County. It is home to the 1.6 million square-foot Anaheim Convention
Center, world class dining for every appetite, championship sports, and a
variety of nightlife and entertainment.
used to have a private party one night of the year for gays and lesbians.
When the event was canceled in 1998, we created Gay Day Anaheim. We based the happening on our big sister event in Orlando, Gay
Day, which attracts
over 100,000 gays and lesbians from around the world each June.
Like the Orlando event, Gay Days Anaheim is a “mix in,” meaning gay people
and straight people mingle together; the park is open to the general public.
Also like Orlando’s Gay Day, we wear RED shirts to identify one another
and show our numbers.
The first Gay Days Anaheim in 1998 attracted about 2,500 people.
Today the event attracts over 30,000 guests to the Disneyland Resort
each year! Pretty amazing. What was once a small one-day gathering has
become a full weekend event with parties, gatherings, group photos,
scavenger hunts, private meals, and much more!
Sure, it can get a little HOT in the desert in the summertime. But so what? That’s why God made pools, right?!
Our fitness friend DAVEY WAVEY told Gaytravel.com, “Interestingly, the high temperatures bring in a different crowd. Instead of attracting the usual crowd from San Diego and Los Angeles,
many of the tourists were from Eastern Europe. For the international
visitors, discounted hotel rooms and hot weather are a huge draw—and
much of Europe closes down later in the summer. It’s why the Palm
Springs locals affectionately refer to the summer months as “Foreskin
This trip, I stayed at INNdulge—a clothing-optional resort for gay men.
Though there is no shortage of clothing-optional or gay hotels in Palm
Springs, INNdulge is different. The owners of INNdulge, Sandy and Jon,
go out of their way to build a real sense of community. Each evening,
for example, the owners hold a social hour to let the guests mix and
mingle. It’s a great way to connect with other visitors and to make new
Davey continues, ”
Having said all of that, here are my best tips for visiting Palm Springs—and staying cool—during the summer months:
1. Bring a car. If you don’t drive to Palm Springs, be
sure to pick up a rental car at the airport. While walking is fine
during the cooler winter months, the summer heat is oppressive—and
dangerous. Get a car and take advantage of the air conditioning.
2. Prioritize the pool. Needless to say, the pool is
more important than the room. Stay at a hotel or resort with an amazing
pool. With temperatures as high as 120 degrees, you’ll want to spend
much of your downtime in the water.
3. Ride the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway. Every half
hour, a cable car departs for a mountain peak 6,000 feet above Palm
Springs. The views are stunning—and, it’s usually 30 degrees cooler at
the top. It’s generally 70 – 90 degrees at the summit—thereby providing
some much-needed natural A/C.
4. Shop at the Thursday street fair. Each Thursday—and
after the hot sun goes down—the city comes alive for a weekly street
fair. Packed with local arts and crafts, food and jewelry, it’s a great
way to spend the cooler evening hours.
5. Drink lots and lots of water. Because it’s so hot
and dry, sweat tends to evaporate very quickly—and you might not realize
how dehydrated you really are. Make sure you drink plenty of water—and
take extra bottle with you while you venture out (especially during the
All the cool things going on….
Palm Canyon Theater:
Elton Johns AIDA
HURRY! thru 3/13/2011
Alexander Weekend 10th Anniversary
3/25/2011 – 3/27/2011
Palm Springs WestFest & Rodeo
3/24/2011 – 3/27/2011
4/8/2011 – 4/11/2011
Coachella Valley Music Festival
4/15/2011 – 4/17/2011
Meet the Museum party for the LGBT Community
Spring and Autumn are actually the best seasons to be in Palm Springs.
Located 120 miles east Los Angeles. The Colonial Spanish heritage, the powerful influence of Hollywood stars and Los Angeles wealthy people in the architecture and lifestyle of this town, and the omnipresence of the desert around, turn Palm Spring an exotic oasis and a top travel reference in south California.
But do you know WHERE you are going to stay??
The choice is simple, if you’re a man….INNdulge.
INNdulge corners the market on comfortable and casual. One section of the structure has the requisite pool and hot tub, and features rooms that are spacious and pampered without being stuffy, with nicely preserved ’50’s style kitchenettes (PS loves its retro history! But new updates are always being done – recently new headboards, desks, tables, dresser’s, flat screen TV’s, and original artwork were added to rooms.)
There is a poolside social hour and INNdulge probably boasts the most spectacular mountain-range view. Practically every Palm Springs Locale is outfitted with misters to combat the desert heat, but INNdulge has the only pool chiller which, when the heat soars to skin-melting temperatures, is quite a draw.
And check this out, last week they installed the desert’s first ever 24 hour security guard. His name is Pablo.
Isn’t that great?!
But seriously, this is the place to stay in Palm Springs. INNdulge Palm Springs is a wonderful example of Palm Springs 50’s architecture….and hospitality. The resort is centered around a kidney-shaped pool. The beautifully landscaped grounds frame the surrounding hotel rooms. The only thing better than the architecture and grounds of the property are the resort’s employees and its owners, who maintain a friendly atmosphere resulting in a loyal repeat crowd.
When in Palm Springs….INNdulge!
601 Grenfall Road Palm Springs CA 92264
ph. 800.833.5675 760.327.1408
William Randolph Hearst’s
iconic palace in the San Simeon hills, is one of the most popular attractions in San Luis Obispo County, CA all year around; 90,000 Sq Foot of FABULOUS! 56 bedrooms, 61 bathrooms, 41 fireplaces and 19 sitting rooms! Jaw Dropping!
But, during the holidays, the opulent historic landmark becomes even more exquisite and alluring. From Thanksgiving through to the New Year, visitors on the “Experience Tour” will get in the Christmas spirit amid the castle’s 1920s-era holiday décor, including two 18-foot, decorated Christmas trees. “Christmas at the Castle” is enchanting!
Every year the staff at Hearst Castle works hard to decorate the estate for the Holidays, creating a special atmosphere that is sure to get you in the Holiday spirit.
Hearst Castle does not have a specific themed tour for Christmas. The main house and all three guest houses will be decorated for the holidays.
During the holidays the Evening Tour program includes Living History Docents dressed in 1930s period clothing along with the holiday decorations in many of the rooms. Two 18-foot Christmas trees fill the Assembly Room as Living History Docents dressed in 1930s period clothing socialize before dinner. Weekend Evening Tours are difficult to reserve, but we have many available during the week.
All of the Hearst Castle tours are highlighted by stops at each of Hearst’s two swimming pools. The Neptune Pool is a magnificent Greco-Roman style pool that features unparalleled coastline views from the hilltop. The Roman Pool is an indoor pool decorated from ceiling to floor with 1″ square mosaic tiles. QUITE MAGNIFICENT!
We did a story on the castle a couple years ago – and when ever we go to visit, we always stay this nearby quirky landmark, called the Madonna Inn. Read that post here on New Gay Travel Guide .
Holidays and Winter
IN GAY PALM SPRINGS!
Looking for a break from Winter weather (and all the stresses of the holiday season)? Look no further! Sunny Palm Springs, California, is the perfect choice for December and January Getaways!
After all, who needs to deal with snow and ice, when you can bask by the pool in the Palm Springs sun instead! Palm Springs always delivers sunshine (more than 330 days each year). And that’s not all. You can also count on an incredible list of December special events and activities, great dining options, and enough shopping options to satisfy even the most extreme shop-a-holic!
So much to do!
(Photo-INNdulge Palm Springs Courtyard)
In Palm Springs, December fun starts early with the Annual Festival of Lights Parade on December 4th. Historic Palm Canyon Drive comes alive with dozens of floats covered with tiny lights, marching bands, singers, and holiday entertainers to get you in the Holiday mood. The fun continues on December 9th with the Walk of the Inns, a free walking tour of the Old Spanish and Mid-Century Modern boutique hotels and Inns in the Tennis Club neighborhood – complete with cookies and apple cider.
The month of December is filled with a variety of entertainment options! Coyote Stageworks presents “A Tuna Christmas” December 2nd through the 19th in downtown Palm Springs, Kathy Griffin performs at the McCallum Theatre. The Fabulous Palm Springs Follies present their annual Christmas Show. The Judds bring their Reunion Tour to The Show in Rancho Mirage, The Palm Springs Cultural Center presents The Young Americans in the Magic of Christmas December 17th, 18th and 19th at the Palm Springs Convention Center, Andy Williams (Yes, he is still alive) does his Christmas Show at the Agua Caliente Casino, and the Desert Winds Freedon Band performs at the Palm Springs Art Museum’s Annenberg Theater. More? There is more! Believe it or not, this is just a sampling of the entertainment options available in and around Palm Springs in December! You can find information and ticket links on all these and many other events are listed on Palm Springs Gay Info . Check them out!
Shop til you drop!
Did you say you needed to do a bit of shopping? When it comes to shopping, Palm Springs has something for everyone! Downtown Palm Springs is filled with boutique and specialty shops with unique gifts, one of a kind collectibles, chic clothing boutiques, and more! Sprinkled among them are great some options that are especially suited to LGBT shoppers – R&R Menswear, Don Vincent, Just Fabulous, the Palm Springs Aloe People, GayMart, Gear Leather, BearWear, Palm Springs Piercing, and Q-Trading to name a few!
Just a bit North on Palm Canyon Drive, there’s an entirely different shopping experience. Uptown Palm Springs is filled with an incredible collection of art galleries, antique dealers, and furniture stores. Oh, and did we mention Trina Turk’s exclusive boutique? Don’t miss it on your next visit!
How about designer Out Mall Shopping?? The Desert Hills Premium Outlets, just 15 minutes away, offer some of the very best bargains on name brand clothing and other gifts. (think Armani, Gucci, Hugo Boss, and Dolce Gabanna). It’s one of the largest outlet malls in all of Southern California, and it’s right on our doorstep!
Here for the Holidays and beyond!
The weeks of Christmas and New Years are always packed in Palm Springs. People come from all over the world to enjoy the Holidays – Palm Springs Style! The LGBT Hotels, Resorts and Inns are decorated and festive, and many of them have special holiday activities planned for guests! The bars and clubs are busy, with nightly specials and events leading up to New Year’s Eve Be sure to book early at your favorite hotel and restaurants, though. After the 25th, the hotels are almost all sold out, so book early if you are coming in late December!
FYI – Insiders Travel Tip – January offers lots to do also. The Palm Springs International Film Festival January 6-17. This is a really big event! PLUS, Martin Luther King Weekend January 14-17. This is always a sellout.
Great Getaways and Super Savings!
Although the Holidays themselves tend to be busy, early December is a great time to snag a discount rate at many of the Palm Springs LGBT Hotels and Inns; making the idea of a Winter Getaway even more attractive! INNdulge Palm Springs is offering an exciting December and January Special of $99 this year!
Noted for its Mid-Century architecture, the award wining INNdulge epotimizes that popular Mid-Century vibe that has made Palm Springs the favorite of architectural entheusiasts and gay travelers. December is a fabulous time to enjoy these very special rates, as the weather is sunny most of the time, and the evenings cool down just enough to wear your favorite resort appareal. All rooms feature extra large king beds and pool views. New furnishings and large flat screen televisions add to the package. Don’t miss this very special rate! Certian holiday periods are exlcuded, and larger rooms are slightly more expensive. Call 1-800-833-5675 for details or visit the INNdulge website.
For more information, visit Palm Springs Gay Info – the official website of the Desert Gay Tourism Guild, a non-profit organization of LGBT and LGBT friendly hotels, restaurants, bars and shops in the Greater Palm Springs area, and throughout the Coachella Valley.
Gay Palm Springs.
This tropical desert oasis is home to famously long, sun-drenched days, breathtaking mountain views and one of the largest gay communities in the country. It has been voted numerous times and won, the Best Gay Destination in the World! How can you not love 330 days a year of sunshine?
The downtown area with its quaint lampposts, benches and Mexican tile-paved enclaves invites strolling among the shops, galleries, eateries and coffeehouses. Rich in history and blessed with glorious weather, it is a prime destination of travelers from all over the world.
Palm Springs offers over 20 top attractions , including Joshua Tree national park, the Living Desert, art galleries, casinos, and of course, endless golf! It’s a huge outdoor playground with consistently brilliant sunshine, great for swimming and sunning and all types of outdoor activities with the sweet, clean air.
Whether it’s a romantic couple’s getaway, a group outing or a frisky single’s adventure at one of the clothing-optional resorts, you’re sure to find an exciting vacation. The city boasts a very large and diverse Gay resident population and has become a prime travel destination from the West coast (Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle), Midwest, Northeast, Southwest, as well as internationally. Expect to meet guys from Europe, Australia, Canada, and from all over the US! Over the last decade, Palm Springs has experienced an explosion of new gay residents and new gay businesses. The resident LGBT population is now estimated at 40 percent.
There are over 30 openly-gay resort hotels in the city to choose from. Our favorite is INNdulge Palm Springs, A Resort Hotel for Gay Men. @ 601 Grenfall Road, Palm Springs CA 92264
PH 800.833.5675 / (760) 327.1408. Rest; Relaxation; and Pampering!
INNdulge is one of the most established guesthouses here in Palm Springs. Classically Mid-Century in design, INNdulge is listed in the Historic Inns of Palm Springs guidebook. Centrally located in the Warm Sands neighborhood (an area flush with clothing-optional gay accommodations), this elegant award-winning 24-room facility offers several sizes of rooms, most of which look out on the spacious pool, open 24 hours. And by the way, the pool is actually “chilled” in the hot summer months! No other gay resort in Palm Springs uses this “chiller system”, which keeps the water at about 86 degrees.
DID YOU KNOW? Howard Hughes broke ground in the Warm Sands neighborhood over 60 years ago with the first resort here in this part of town. Now this boutique neighborhood, wedged between Ramon and Sunny Dunes Road is home to 10+ resorts – a little oasis of style and pampering.
There is nothing quite like evenings in the desert. Taking a dip in the pool at Midnight. Sitting out with friends under the clear starry skies sipping cocktails, feeling the warm desert breeze against your skin. In fact, many people will take a siesta in the summer months afternoons, just so they can enjoy the magic of the Palm Springs late evenings.
INNdulge Palm Springs is a wonderful example of Palm Springs 50’s architecture. You can appreciate the architecture and the mountain views during the hotel’s free social hour that extends for two hours. It is a great way to meet the hotel’s wonderful owners, John and Jean-Guy, as well as your fellow guests.
Plus you get all of the comforts of home and MORE. Today’s savvy travelers except a level of quality in their resort destinations, and that’s what you will find here.
24 Poolside Rooms and Suites
DVD Players in Every Room
Complimentary DVD Library
King Size Beds
Refrigerators, Coffee Pots, Ironing Boards, Safes
Large Heated Pool (open 24 hours)
12 Man Jacuzzi (open 24 hours)
Cool Misters for Hot Days
Complimentary Continental Breakfast
On-Site Gym and Wi-Fi throughout the property
And you don’t take our word for it, just read the reviews left by members of the press worldwide.
This September this classic resort will celebrate its 15th Anniversary as one of the leading gay hotels in Palm Springs! Don’t miss all the summer fun! INNdulge your fantasies, INNdulge your fancy, INNdulge your spirit!
SUMMER SPECIAL! Second Night FREE !
Every Second Weeknight is FREE! Stay 2, pay for 1. Stay 4, pay for 2. Call for Details!
June 1 – September 30, 2010, Sunday thru Thursday Only, Holidays Excepted
PLUS, this summer get a free SPLASH PASS – a wallet-sized discount card that gets you special savings at area restaurants, retailers and other businesses, and discounted admission to many area attractions and special events. It’s the perfect addition to Summer Splash! The best part? The SPLASH PASS is absolutely FREE to everyone – valley visitors and residents alike!
There are SPECIAL EVENTS happening all summer long ! With year-round sun, the largest gay events in the country, and world-class shopping and dining, Palm Springs is consistently rated travel adventure.
and Orange County!
It’s one of our favorite places and great ANYTIME of the year! And if you can get out this way during the holidays, the Christmas Boat Parade in Newport Beach, is not to be missed!
Tucked away on Southern California’s Orange County coastline lies the famed getaway destination of Newport Beach, a Southern California coastal fantasyland of accessible luxury, the perfect escape from ordinary life for sophisticated fun seekers and families. Located only 45 minutes south of Los Angeles, Newport is a calming world away from the urban metropolis. Just 10 miles from Anaheim and
With nine miles of pristine beaches, charming villages, upscale shopping, premier golf courses, spectacular dining and year-round Mediterranean weather–Newport Beach combines the cosmopolitan flair of a modern city with the casual vibe of a postcard perfect beach town featuring one of the world’s largest small yacht harbors. Coupled with both natural and manmade beauty, Newport Beach is a place that allows visitors to thoroughly relax and enjoy laidback sophistication at its finest.
It’s the longest-running holiday boat parade and most elaborate holiday celebration on water in the country featuring over 100 vessels and dating back to 1908. – So this year is the 101st Annual!
Newport Beach Christmas Boat Parade is older than such holiday events as the tree lighting at Rockefeller Center or the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.
John Scarpa, an Italian gondolier, and Joseph Beek, the principal forces in the early development of Balboa Island, arrive in the Newport Harbor area in 1900. These two men establish the Tournament of Lights—an event that will continue for the century to come.
In July 1908, the first lighted boat parade takes place. Scarpa, along with his fellow small boat operators, create a loosely organized affair consisting of nine vessels. The parade, illuminated by Japanese lanterns, is led by Scarpa’s gondola followed by eight canoes. Thus, he is credited with creating the first lighted boat parade.
Decorated multi-million dollar yachts, kayaks, canoes and other small boats will light up the harbor as a dazzling array of holiday lights and music fill the air.
Parade kicks off on Wednesday, December 16 at 6:30PM and runs nightly until Sunday, December 20th, 2009. Charting a 14 mile route throughout Newport Harbor.
Viewing areas available for the public on public beaches located on Balboa Peninsula, the Fun Zone and Balboa Island. Additionally, several establishments along the waterfront offer prime viewing.
Never compromising a beautiful Mediterranean climate for any of life’s greatest pleasures, Newport Beach rings in the holidays with truly memorable and festive seasonal celebrations!
Christmas Boat Parade Newport Beach
Orange County and Anaheim LGBT Anaheim and Orange County
100 YEARS AND COUNTING!
A landmark jewel that was once nestled quietly among an enormous orange grove in the early 20th century, Anaheim White House is still Anaheim’s most famous hidden treasure.
This beautiful historical landmark was skillfully crafted by a gentleman named Dosithe Gervais in 1909. Jim and Barbara Stovall purchased the home in 1981. They planned to build condominiums in its place, even hiring an architect to help with the design. But on the eve of the scheduled demolition, Barbara told her husband that she couldn’t bear the thought of the home being destroyed. New plans were then drawn up, almost immediately, for the restoration of the home as “Thee White House Restaurant,” which opened on New Year’s Eve of 1981.
In 1987, Italian immigrant Bruno Serato took over the ownership of the restaurant, which now features Northern Italian cuisine. His award-winning excellence and signature entrees befit the establishment, now Anaheim White House Restaurant, and his philosophy is simple: to treat each and every one of his patrons as a distinguished guests in his home. Simple as it may be, Anaheim’s once “hidden treasure” is now recognized worldwide, and is now a “home” to many.
Numerous celebrities such as Danny De Vito, Andrea Bocelli and even former president Jimmy Carter have graced the home’s threshold. Likewise, Anaheim White House has also graced catering events for many, including Madonna, and has even traveled as far as Bora Bora, to delight dinner guests with our magnificent fare.
Not only has it been a home to so many distinguished guests, but it is also a home to several awards of excellence. Anaheim White House garnered the DiRoNA award, a very prestigious award given to only a select few in all of North America; and also the highly coveted Golden Sceptre award, the highest honor award given by the Southern California Restaurant Writers Association.
Next week, the White House will host their 100th anniversary celebration dinner – and unveil the new West Wing!
Friday November 6th.
So whether your are visting DisneyLand for Gay Days or just enjoying the beautiful Orange County and all it has to offer, a visit would not be complete without lunch or dinner at this historical White House!
For 12 years, gays and lesbians wearing red shirts have descended on Disneyland in California for Gay Days, an annual event that forces mainstream Americans and Mickey Mouse to deal with the LGBTQ community face to face.
Much different than the week long Gay Days held in Orlando each June at DisneyWorld, which draws lots of circuit boys and party-goers, this weekend in Anaheim draws over 30,000 people, but is a real mix of men, women, twinks, daddies, bears, couples and gaybies.
Years ago, Disneyland used to have a private party one night of the year for gays and lesbians. When the event was canceled in 1998, Gay Day Anaheim was created. “We based the happening on our big sister event in Orlando, Gay Day, which attracts over 100,000+ gays and lesbians from around the world each June.
Like the Orlando event, Gay Days Anaheim is a “mix in,” meaning gay people and straight people mingle together; the park is open to the general public. Also like Orlando’s Gay Day, we wear RED shirts to identify one another and show our numbers.” says producer Eddie Shapiro.
Disney doesn’t endorse any group that comes into their park during regular park operating hours. While they may reserve space (like they do for the Gay Days group), that does not connote an official endorsement. In order to make it truly official, “we’d need to rent out the entire park, and they don’t do that during regular operating hours.”
“Disney has been wonderfully supportive of the event, especially as it has grown over the years. They are involved in all of the official aspects of the event (hotel room blocks, the Info Center), and have been very accommodating. But they are not involved in the actual ‘unofficial gay days’ in the park. This year, however we continue to work closely with PRIDE, which is Disney’s LGBT diversity group, and they have done a great job of integrating the event as much as possible into Disneyland’s schedule.”
Saturday is the main day at Disneyland, and Sunday is the main day at Disney’s California Adventure. But producers of the event, Eddie Shapiro and Jeffrey Epstein always plan a weekend of festivities to please everyone.
“It’s important for us to be very inclusive of the entire LGBTQ community. We try really hard at scheduling the weekend with all kinds of activities that we hope will matter to all the different diverse tastes that make up our community. “
Past events have included a youth scavenger hunt, teen dance party, bears gathering, book reading, family photo ops, singles gatherings, couple dinners, lesbian lunch, movie screenings, celebrity meet-and-greet, ice cream social, morning wake-up work-outs, cocktail parties, and a big evening dance party at House of Blues.
“We really want EVERYONE to feel welcome and there is something for them!” explained Eddie.
It’s always interesting to see the straight men and women who show up at the park that day, unaffiliated with Gay Days, who appeared to be rethinking the red shirts they slipped into that morning, now finding themselves dressed in the same color as half the park’s patrons, most of whom were walking arm in arm with someone of the same sex!
For the most part, families are friendly and everyone has a great time. There are always those few right wingers who are upset that they chose the same weekend as the gays, and you may hear them muttering something under their breathe.
There have never been any reports of physical confrontations between gay people and homophobic guests during Gay Days. While I have heard of a few isolated incidents of people muttering rude remarks under their breath, 99% of the comments are overwhelmingly positive.
Last year a family struck up a conversation with my partner and I, and they were very much in support of equality for gays and the legalization of civil unions. Plus, while Disney does not endorse the event, they are aware it happens so security are on alert for any harassment, and the people in guest relations do a great job of handling any problems which may arise.
In 2007, The Walt Disney Co. changed its policy to allow same-sex couples to participate in a popular Fairy Tale Wedding program it runs mainly at its two U.S. resorts and cruise line.
Disney previously had allowed gay couples to organize their own weddings or commitment ceremonies at rented meeting rooms at the resorts, but had barred them from purchasing its Fairy Tale Wedding package and holding the event at locations at Disneyland and Walt Disney World that are set aside specifically for weddings.
“We believe this change is consistent with Disney’s longstanding policy of welcoming all guests in an inclusive environment…
…We are not in the business of making judgments about the lifestyle of our guests. We are in the hospitality business and our parks and resorts are open to everyone,” a Disney spokesperson said.
There are lots of discounted rooms available for the Gay Days Anaheim event.
Stay at one of the fabulous Disneyland Resort hotels for a fraction of the regular price! Last year they sold out in advance. DON’T MISS OUT!
Also many local hotels particiapte with the Gay Days group offering weekend special pricing.
Holiday Inn Buena Park
New Gay Travel Guide recommends Hotel Menage. A wonderful boutique hotel right next door to Disneyland.
There is LOTS to see and do in Anaheim, and if you can afford the time, I would urge you to take an additional couple days to explore Anaheim, Orange County (the OC) and all of the surrounding beach and art communities. It’s a beautiful area of Southern California packed with inviting beaches, unparalleled shopping and entertainment, trendy restaurants, nightlife, championship golf, lively art districts, beautiful historic landmarks and the ultimate of family attractions.
Gay Days aficionados Jeffrey and Eddie immersed themselves in Disney culture so much so, that they even penned Queens in the Kingdom in 2007.
Known for its miles of clean sandy beaches, working artists and annual festivals, Laguna Beach is the perfect California small town getaway for visitors near and far.
It has been a small gay enclave for decades. In the summer, downtown Laguna is simply mobbed, yet still retains its small-town feel, with sidewalk bistros and artsy shopping.
Framed by the San Joaquin hills, the coves and bluffs have a decidedly Mediterranean feel. Here you will find a small gay paradise with some very nice restaurants, gay beaches, small hotels and nightlife. Laguna Beach is a popular getaway for L.A. gays.
Located mid-way between Los Angeles and San Diego, and just a stone’s throw from Anaheim, the city of Laguna Beach is a seaside village of 25,000-plus residents that includes hundreds of local working artists and unique gift shops.
It is home for people who seek the tranquility of beach accommodations as well as endless cultural opportunities. These include dozens of art and music events throughout the year, as well as an art museum and a live stage theater. While there is not a gay-borhood per se’, there are gays everywhere!
Four of the well-known festivals include the
Sawdust Art Festival, (June 26-Aug.30))
Festival of Arts / Pageant of the Masters
(in July 5 – August 31)
and Art-A-Fair. (in July 26 – August 30)
California’s finest Summer art event , Festival of Arts, is staged in a six-acre canyon park near the ocean in Laguna Beach. The stars of this summertime tradition, which began here in 1932, are over 140 of the Southland’s most accomplished artists.
Each night during the summer season at 8:30 the Festival of Arts presents its most famous attraction, the Pageant of the Masters. It is like nothing you have ever seen!
Pageant of the Masters …What is it?
Ninety minutes of “living pictures” – incredibly faithful art re-creations of classical and contemporary works with real people posing to look exactly like their counterparts in the original pieces. An outdoor amphitheater, professional orchestra, original score, live narration, intricate sets, sophisticated lighting, expert staff, and hundreds of dedicated volunteers have won recognition for the Pageant as the best presentation of its kind.
These annual festivals together attract hundreds of thousands of visitors from around the world who experience original artwork in many different forms. Scheduled throughout the summer and early fall, unique paintings, sculpture, photography and ceramics are just a few forms of art that visitors can enjoy.
More than two dozen hotels, B & B’s, seaside villas and full-service resorts dot the coastline throughout the city. There are accommodations for every taste and style. Many of these properties have been featured in media publications throughout the United States and many have breathtaking views.
When we were in Anaheim last year, we stayed at Hotel Menage. The same owner has two properties in Laguna Beach. La Casa Del Camino, a 1927 seaside retreat and landmark hotel with an awesome rooftop and Laguna Beach Inn , a Spanish Mediterranean Boutique Inn. – And the gorgeous Crystal Cove is right there nearby also!
When it comes to dining, Laguna Beach has many favorite, long-established restaurants as well as extraordinary choices in many ethnic cuisines. For the trendy or traditional experience, the area has become known as one of the best dining destinations in Southern California with many culinary delights.
Laguna Beach is Southern California’s premier seaside destination located just 75 minutes south of Los Angeles and along the central coast of Orange County. Known as home to hundreds of local artists, it is just one of Southern California’s amazing gems!
Laguna Beach is primarily served by John Wayne/Orange County Airport located 20 minutes away.
Although mostly hetero, a fair number of gay boys and girls do attend. The critically acclaimed Coachella Music and Arts festival is one of several music festivals in the United States, that carries a certain cachet that’s hard to match. It is ranked as the number one music festival in the world.
Perhaps it’s the scenery — listening to music on a grassy polo field surrounded by swaying palm trees and craggy desert mountains. Or maybe it’s the thrill of discovering new artists and rediscovering old ones standing shoulder-to-shoulder with friends, strangers and the random Hollywood celebrity. Like Paris Hilton!
Always lots of eye candy!
The three day event takes place every year in India, California, just outside of Palm Springs. Organized by Goldenvoice and held at the Empire Polo Fields . The event features many genres of music including alternative rock, hip hop, and Electronic music as well as large sculptural art.
The event has several stages/tents set-up throughout the grounds, each playing live music continuously. This years BIG NAME was Paul McCartney. Previous year names ranged from Madonna to the Red Hot Chilli Peppers.
Despite economic times, promoters say the turnout exceeded expectations, and this year’s attendance figure might be the third largest in the festival’s 10-year history.
The three-day ticket price may have been steep — roughly $300, including service charges — but when divided among the 131 acts on the bill, that breaks down to less than $2.50 per act.
Each year, the festival also features interesting installation art and sculptures. Most of the pieces are interactive, and provide entertainment and eye candy for attendees walking throughout the Polo grounds.
Some of the works were initially created for the Burning Man festival. In contrast to the largely non-repeating roster of musical artists represented at the festival, a few of the visual artists, such as Robochrist Industries, the Tesla Coil (Cauac), Cyclecide, and The Do LaB, have appeared during several consecutive years at Coachella.
EVERY APRIL, COACHCELLA draws in thousands from around the world.
The evening dance event and visual light presentations are like nothing you have ever seen. WATCH THE YOU TUBE COACHELLA CLIP.
And see ya there next year!