London Is Gay at Heart

The city’s gay/lesbian scene ranks among the top 5 in the World

London has a varied and vibrant gay/lesbian scene that ranks among the top 5 in the World. A quick trip through Soho is a welcome introduction to this world-class metropolis. Old Compton Street pulses as the pink heart of this corner of London, acting as the meeting point of the gay community and a convenient navigational guide from which to explore the nearby landmarks of Covent Garden, Leicester Square and Piccadilly Circus.

The East End’s Hoxton Square is a marvelous conglomeration of bars, clubs and galleries while Earl’s Court offers a number of establishments catering to the local queer community, including a branch of Balans restaurant, magazine and DVD emporium Clone Zone, and local drinking spot Brompton’s.

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For shopping queens, Camden Market is frequently visited by top fashion stylists looking for the next big thing. A number of bars line the nearby waterways and provide tasty tonics to help you and your feet unwind after a long day of lugging your new wares.

Hoxton and Clerkenwell on the East End are hot-houses of up-and-coming young talent featuring boutiques of one-off clothes and interiors. And, of course, for the big chain names, Oxford Street is unmissable. Sloane Street is also a good choice with dozens of major labels, including Gucci and Chanel.

London is also home to a large number of Michelin class restaurants, many which are run by Internationally recognized chefs. You just can’t miss the opportunity to dine in one the many Indian restaurants. London has arguably the best Indian restaurants in the World.

Balans is a favorite for many gays, situated in the heart of Old Compton Street, known as much for it’s cute waiters as the food they serve. And vegetarians flock to First Out, a lesbian owned café famous for it’s eggplant lasagna and freshly-squeezed juices.

Old Compton is the spiritual home of the queer community. Muscle marys, media darlings and the S&M crowd all congregate in this three-block side street running parallel to Shaftesbury complete with its very own West End theatre – the perfect place to begin your queer quest through the streets of London.

London provides world class entertainment either you prefer a refined and sophisticated evening of opera or maybe a dazzling night of jazz. Check out the Tkts office for official half price theatre tickets on Leicester Square for cheap same day performance tickets.

London of course also offers a wide range of accommodations, ranging from simple B&B’s to top-notch luxury hotels. Mayfair and the West End are where you will find the bulk of the luxury options, including the opulent 45 Park Lane – Dorchester Collection.

Outlet Holiday Rentals has hundreds of private apartments on their books available for rental periods of anything from a day to a lifetime. Most of the properties are centrally located and the company is gay owned and operated.

Hotels:

45 Park Lane – Dorchester Collection
Overlooking Hyde Park, 45 Park Lane features an on-site fitness studio, a modern American steak restaurant, and a team of massage therapists. A striking central staircase leads to a mezzanine featuring a bar, library and a private media room.

Haymarket Hotel
In the heart of London’s theatre district, Haymarket Hotel is surrounded by restaurants, bars, and is just next door to the Theatre Royal.

London Marriott Hotel County Hall
With fantastic views of Big Ben and the River Thames, this historic 5-star Marriott hotel boasts a swimming pool and relaxing sauna.

InterContinental London Park Lane
This elegant, 5-star hotel is located between Mayfair and Knightsbridge.

The Soho Hotel
Situated 5 minutes’ walk from Oxford Street, The Soho Hotel features a fully equipped gym with an on-site personal trainer. Piccadilly Circus and Leicester Square are within a 10-minute walk of the hotel, as well as many tube stations.

Astors Hotel
Located in exclusive Belgravia, this boutique guest house is half a mile from Victoria Station and the shops of Sloane Square.

The Mandeville Hotel
This 4-star luxury hotel is just 5 minutes’ walk from the shops of Oxford Street and Bond Street London Underground Station.

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