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See Gay Ugandan Drama and Stay at This Chic Theater Hotel

Ato Blankson-Wood and Robert Gilbert from the play The Rolling Stone

This hotel might be the best place to stay and see The Rolling Stone in NYC this month.

It’s too late to get to New York for World Pride and the 50th anniversary of Stonewall, though some of the best entertainment spots in the Big Apple continue to celebrate LGBTQ life. 

One of the biggest not-to-be-missed events last month was the premiere of Stonewall! Ian Bell’s opera (which marks the 75th anniversary of the New York Opera as well). The show followed LGBTQ characters as they prepare to go to the Stonewall Inn on that fateful 1969 evening. The closing performance of Stonewall!, which had a libretto by Mark Campbell and direction by Leonard Foglia, was hosted by Bob, The Drag Queen (of Rupaul's Drag Race) at The Rose Theater at Lincoln Center. 

But there's still a number of events of interest to LGBTQ travelers at Lincoln Center, including The Rolling Stone. When it premiered in London, it was called “a scorching portrayal of love and persecution" by the Evening Standard. Chris Urch’s show, set in Uganda, is a really intimate and incendiary drama about two brothers — one is a closeted gay man and the other a preacher who vehemently preaches against gays and ultimately the relationship his brother is hiding. (The Rolling Stone is playing previews through July.)

There’s no better place to stay for the show than Time New York hotel. The chic meets minimal hotel is literally right in the theater district. The hotel is across the street from Chicago, the musical (playing at The Ambassador Theatre) and literally a few steps from The Book of Mormon. The sixth-floor suite I tried was quiet as a monastery during Pride month, which is amazing considering the hotel is literally in the heart of midtown Manhatten and a few minutes walk to Times Square, Broadway, and the subway.

The hotel itself is an artsy and sophisticated boutique hotel with some fun touches. A hanging pendant light in my room had a little gay doll couple inside it, something you only really notice when you get close. The clock at the lobby is both anagram and digital and it takes a while to even realize it’s not just a moving art piece. I sat with other visitors filming it and felt slightly calmed by it (see below).

The Lobby Clock from Diane Anderson-Minshall on Vimeo.

There’s a glass pavilion that makes watching the city at night delightful. There are lovely terraces, a prize-winning restaurant, a theater room, two bars (the second-floor lobby bar was wonderfully intimate), and there’s a penthouse (with a bathroom to die for). But the simple suites are minimal chic and sort of masculine of center.

There's food everywhere around the hotel (plus the in-house Serafina restaurant), but if you're like me you'll also want to try the street vendors nearby and have a $5 meal sitting outside on the nearby pavilion. Time New York is a great spot for capturing the whole feel of Broadway and the theater district, and some say, the heart of NYC. 

30 Years of Out100Out / Advocate Magazine - Jonathan Groff and Wayne Brady

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Diane Anderson-Minshall