Travel inspires us. it encourages us to explore beyond our everyday world and gives us a new perspective and energy when we return to it. With the New Year upon us, we thought it a perfect time to look forward to what new inspirations might be out there for the gay traveler. Inside you will find our special feature “Travel Trends 2006.” Drawn from our own research and reports from colleagues in the field, it includes everything from new destinations to advances in luxury and technology that are making travel a more enriched experience. And then there are the surprises. The increase in Internet access during flights is my favorite. I have yet to experience this, but simply cannot wait to be shopping eBay while jetting across the sky. I am sure you will discover some favorites of your own.
In this issue we look not only at destinations that are the next big thing but also places that are simply getting bigger. For us, that’s Las Vegas. We wanted to explore why the city known for slot machines and showgirls increasingly is a destination of choice for the gay traveler (fantasies of being Sharon Stone from the movie Casino notwithstanding.) Writer Steve Friess and photography team Delaney + Gitte braved the bright lights, backstages, and buffets to answer for us, Just how gay can Sin City get? In a word, very.
Inside we also introduce Tip Service, a travel tips column. It’s a chance for readers to share thoughts and experiences on being a smarter, more sophisticated traveler. For the inaugural edition we invited staff and friends to give us their advice. Editor Darren Frei, who in this issue writes about his adventures in a very frigid Finland, recommends buying luggage fashioned in obnoxious colors or patterns. Though running counter to his stylish sensibilities, it eases identification at the dreaded baggage claim. Style director Gregory Wein, in an attempt to ward off potential airborne maladies during long flights, swears by a small dab of Neosporin in each nostril. I tried this on a flight to Iceland and offer some additional words of wisdom; for delicate reasons that I am sure will be obvious, use a Q-tip and don’t attempt it during take-off. Trust me.
Hopefully in the pages that follow you will find something to keep as an inspiration for your next journey. And as you embark on your first travel of the New Year, be sure to e-mail us with your own travel tips, especially if you are able to do it while cruising at 30,000 feet—although I will be jealous.