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LGBT: Key West

by Akhil Kalepu

Dec 6, 2014

Key West, Florida © Ventdusud | Dreamstime

LGBTQ

The tiny island of Key West was basically isolated until the beginning of the 20th century, when it was connected to mainland Florida. Since then, it has attracted travelers as a hedonistic escape and residents have included Ernest Hemingway, Tennessee Williams and Richard A. Heyman, one of the first openly gay mayors in the United States.

 

 

Key West has since become a top travel destination in LGBT tourism. There are a number of gay-friendly hotels, many of which are owned and operated by the LGBT community. Island House has been revered as one of the best gay resorts in the world. The clothing-optional, all-male hotel is located in historic Old Town, and features a lot of amenities like 24-hour poolside dining, WiFi, Jacuzzis and more. For something more family-friendly, the Hyatt Key West is a favorite among LGBT tourists.

 

 

La Te Da is a popular spot in Key West, inviting a mix of gay and straight locals and tourists. Their iconic cabaret and piano bar has nightly entertainment ranging from drag queens to stand-up comedy. There is also a great rooftop terrace that is perfect for watching the sunset. If you’re looking for some fine dining, check out Louie’s Backyard, which overlooks the ocean on the south end of Upper Duval Street. Louie’s is a favorite for upscale, multicultural cuisine, and a must-see for foodies in Key West.

 

 

Key West is, of course, famous as a nightlife destination, especially for those looking for an LGBT bar. Aqua is a popular dance club with weekly parties, but if you want something with a more “divey” feel, head to Bourbon Street Pub and Bobby’s Monkey Bar.

 

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