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Now that gay marriage is legal across the entire United States, it’s time to talk honeymoons. Here now, destinations from the posh and tropical to the rural and serene.
12 Dreamy Honeymoon Spots Perfect for New Gay Marriages
Having given us the world’s first openly gay head of state, Iceland’s embodiment of the liberal Nordic outlook makes it perfect for LGBT honeymooners whose taste in landscapes skew toward the results of violent geological upheaval. Gay life there centers around the Icelandic capital of Reykjavik, which boasts a handful of gay owned and operated bed and breakfasts, and a number of bold and contemporary spaces, like the 101 Hotel, which boasts nice views of the harbor and old town. A stay in the Blue Lagoon Clinic offers the Iceland-only perk of a spa treatment in a geothermally heated lagoon. With the new wave of budget airlines offering transatlantic routes, fares from Boston to Reykjavik have been known to go as low as $99.
Now that the Supreme Court has declared same-sex marriage legal in all 50 states, dreamy gay honeymoons are within reach for millions more Americans. And with marriage equality and anti-discrimination laws on the rise worldwide, more places are looking fit for dreamy gay honeymoons.
In 2014, only about 55 percent of same-sex couples went on a honeymoon after their wedding ceremony, according to Community Marketing & Insights, a San Francisco-based market research firm that tracks LGBT travel trends. With the expansion of marriage equality in the U.S., those figures presumably stand to change a great deal, as more same-sex couples tie the knot who haven’t already been together for decades, or aren’t feeling rushed to meet some potentially short-lived legal window for doing so. Community Marketing senior research director David Paisley also attributes this figure to the fact that gays and lesbians tend to travel more than straight couples. A same-sex couple about to get hitched might deem that trip to Paris three months away their delayed honeymoon.
At the same time, the nature of gay travel is changing. Where once, the focus was on finding gay-owned hotels in (sometimes literal) islands of tolerance, younger gay travelers are looking more broadly, as more countries adopt the kind of marriage equality laws and legal protections that make LGBT travelers feel safe. Which is especially important on a honeymoon, if you plan on showing affection in public.
There’s also a generational shift at work here. Baby boomers are still big fans of the gay guest house or LGBT B&B, while millennials don’t tend to seek them out. (Luckily, these places tend to have so few rooms that baby boomers are enough.) Of course, there are also gigantic marketing budgets at play. “With Marriott and Hilton in a battle to see who can be the most gay friendly,” says Paisley, friendliness tends not to matter as much when it’s coming from hospitality companies. As a result, younger LGBT travelers tend to value location and quality over brand reputation, though tolerant laws and locals are as important as ever.
Up ahead, 12 ideal spots for gay honeymoons, running the gamut from the posh and tropical to the rural and serene.