Greetings from Madrid Spain!
The Greater Fort Lauderdale Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (GFLGLCC) recently published the Second Annual 2014 Gay Travel Guide. The guide has one simple goal — enticing people from around the globe to come and enjoy what Fort Lauderdale offers LGBT visitors.
We’re just back from Madrid Spain, location of the International Gay & Lesbian Travel Association’s (IGLTA) annual conference. In addition to the many attendees, several of our members and partners were in attendance. Included were Richard Gray, LGBT Managing Director of the Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention and Visitors Bureau – CVB, Casey Koslowski, owner of The Grand Resort and Spa, Felipe Cardenas and Andreas Vasquez of Gay Hills, Matt Skallerud of Pink Banana Media, Scott Mazer of Gay Ad Network and Chance Mitchell of the National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC).
While in Madrid, we distributed our complimentary Gay Travel Guide to all of the attendees and many locals. The 64-page pocket guide, includes a directory of all chamber businesses which may benefit from tourism, maps, cultural, spiritual and event listings and much more. The Guide and distribution is fully funded by display ad sales and partnerships.
Prior to Madrid, the Guide was most recently distributed at the IPW trade show in Chicago. In early March, we were in Berlin Germany for ITB, which is the world’s largest travel show, followed by Gay Pride in Lake Worth. Moving forward, we will be at Gay Days in Orlando this June, Gay Days in Las Vegas in September and Bogotá Colombia in October. Additional events and locations will be added as we move forward. Locally, the guides are in all of our hospitality member businesses, the CVB and the Information booths in all terminals in the Fort Lauderdale airport.
The GFLGLCC works with partners like the Greater Fort Lauderdale CVB to distribute the travel guides to LGBT groups and convention attendees that are visiting the Greater Fort Lauderdale area throughout the year. Recent groups include the North American Gay Volleyball Association, Gay Rodeo, Gay Polo League, the National Gay Pilots Association and Beach Bear Weekend. We’re working closely with the upcoming National Association of Gay Real Estate Professionals on their upcoming conference this October. Many of our member guesthouses are offering special rates and we’re putting together closing night events for October 16th in Wilton Manors.
The 2014 Gay Travel Guide is designed to give the LGBT traveler coming to the Fort Lauderdale a head’s-up approach to where they would be welcomed at various hotels, nightspots, restaurants, events and tourist attractions. Thus saving valuable time and money, resulting in a more enjoyable, memorable and a return visit to Greater Fort Lauderdale. In addition, the virtual flip-book can be viewed on the chamber’s website (www.GoGayFortLauderdale.com), the CVB’s new LGBT microsite within Sunny.org and other on-line websites.
The GFLGLCC’s mission is to promote business and economic opportunities for the LGBT and LGBT-friendly community. We are an advocate and resource for all member businesses that promote equality. We promote tourism with a unified approach by working with appropriate and related organizations. We work as partners with local LGBT organizations, the National Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC), other LGBT chambers and with businesses wishing to make stronger outreach to the Greater Fort Lauderdale LGBT community.
Keith Blackburn is the President / CEO of the Greater Fort Lauderdale Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce