LONDON -- From Judy Garland rooms to pink houses, the LGBT community can expect to find a warm welcome throughout most of Europe.
TripAdvisor, the world's largest and most popular travel community, today announced its top 10 gay and lesbian-friendly hotels in Europe, based on TripAdvisor editors and travelers. The poll followed recent news of a Berkshire B&B turning away a gay couple.
"Whether you're a couple looking for an enjoyable and hassle-free holiday or a single traveler searching for like-minded fun, real TripAdvisor travelers have done the hard work for you by experiencing, and then recommending, the best gay and lesbian-friendly hotels to suit your needs and budget," said Emma O'Boyle, a spokeswoman for TripAdvisor.
1. Colson House, Brighton, England
Colson House is a uniquely themed boutique hotel dedicated to the large screen - all hotel rooms are named after movie icons. Located in the heart of Brighton's vibrant gay scene, the owners, Mark and Eamon, go the extra mile to make your stay memorable. As one TripAdvisor traveler said, "I stayed here with my partner and had a lovely time. We stayed in the Judy Garland room, which was tastefully decorated and not OTT at all."
2. Hotel Sejour Beaubourg, Paris, France
The Hôtel Séjour Beaubourg is located in the very center of Paris, only a few steps from the Centre Georges Pompidou and within walking distance of the Louvre and Notre Dame. The hotel offers comfortable rooms featuring bright and modern design and free Wi-Fi. As one TripAdvisor traveler explains, "For gay travelers on a budget, it's a gem. You're right on the Marais, and there are lots of gay bars all around you."
3. Hotel Axel, Barcelona, Spain
Hotel Axel focuses on the gay community but is welcoming to everyone, regardless of sexual orientation. This design hotel is close to the exclusive boutiques on Passeig de Gràcia and boasts a swimming pool, gym and sauna. As one TripAdvisor traveler explains, "I spent a week with my husband and it was great, fantastic environment for gay or straight couples and for singles. Perfect location and very close to the center of the city."
4.Hotel Ca' Dogaressa, Venice, Italy
In a picturesque corner in the heart of Venice, Hotel Ca' Dogaressa overlooks Canale di Cannaregio. Its traditional Venetian rooms boast period furniture, rich fabrics and precious marbles. As one TripAdvisor traveler comments, "We are a gay couple and would definitely come back to this hotel. We have felt absolutely at ease here and had a wonderful time."
5. Clarion Hotel Prague Old Town, Prague, Czech Republic
This modern property is the only four-star hotel in Prague that has membership of the IGLTA (International Gay & Lesbian Travel Association). The hotel is located in the city center, close to the river Vltava and within easy walking distance of the tourist sites of the Old Town. As one TripAdvisor traveler said, "Staff were very nice and helpful. Hot welcome drink in -15 degrees C was most welcome! Delicious homemade sweets were served for breakfast."
6. Ty Rosa, Cardiff, Wales
Ty Rosa, Welsh for “pink house,” offers a warm welcome to all, whatever your sexual orientation. A 15-minute walk from Cardiff city center, this charming, gay-run, boutique guest house with free Wi-Fi offers stylish rooms and an excellent breakfast. As one TripAdvisor traveler explains, "Excellent B&B - Paul and Stuart could not be more friendly, with lots of local knowledge of the gay scene. First class housekeeping - spotless room and bathroom."
7. Hotel Deutsche Eiche, Munich, Germany
The Deutsche Eiche (German Oak) is one of Munich's oldest meeting places for gay and lesbian visitors with a reputation for attracting creative and arty types. Less than 700 feet from the Viktualienmarkt, the hotel welcomes everyone. The trendy Glockenbach district, the Marienplatz and the banks of the Isar River are just a few steps away. As one TripAdvisor traveler explains, "A great gay/lesbian hotel. Good food, great location, nice and spacious rooms, cheap, very friendly staff and an extraordinary gay sauna."
8. The Golden Bear, Amsterdam, Netherlands
The Golden Bear claims to have been the first gay hotel in Amsterdam, founded shortly after World War II. The hotel is located in two historic buildings dating to 1737 and is situated in the very center of the city close to all the main attractions. As one TripAdvisor traveler said, "I would really recommend this place to anyone looking to spend some quality time in old Amsterdam, whether gay or straight."
9. Los Almendros, Playa des Ingles, Gran Canaria
Los Almendros is a complex of private bungalows designed exclusively for gay and lesbian travelers. The hotel is located in the most gay-friendly part of the island, in the middle of Playa del Inglés and just a few minutes walk from the Jumbo shopping center where you can find wonderful restaurants and gay bars. As one TripAdvisor traveler comments, "Would highly recommend - I haven't found anywhere better as a gay traveler in Gran Canaria."
10. Hotel Sachsenhof, Berlin, Germany
Hotel Sachsenhof is one of Berlin's oldest buildings dating back to emperor times. Else Lasker Schüler wrote her famous poems here and the building was the setting for Erich Kästner's story "Emil und die Detektive". Famous sights such as the Ku Damm are easy to reach within a few minutes. As one recent TripAdvisor traveler explains, "Friendly and extremely helpful staff. Leather and fetish wear no problem and as two gay guys travelling, we felt very at ease and the location is excellent."