New Cuban LGBTQ Resort To Open In 2019

Cuba is getting a new gay resort with 248 rooms.

ContraMuro.com reports that the island nation is preparing for the rise of the Rainbow Muthu hotel.

According to JoeMyGod, MGM Mutha Hotels & Resorts has announced that they are working on a “luxurious five-star” hotel that will cater to LGBTQ people and specifically gay men. So far, plans are for the spot to have five restaurants, three bars, a spa, a theater room, and plenty of pool space.

The resort will be located near Cayo Guillermo and is scheduled to open in the first half of 2019, says Forbes Mexico.

That said, more details are being withheld until the Cuban National Assembly votes on reforming the country’s constitution. Depending on how the vote goes, the new constitution could open the door for same-sex marriage.

The process is planned to run from August 13 to November 15, so we’ll hear more details about the resort sometime after that.

h/t: ContraMuro.com, JoeMyGod, Forbes Mexico

If you have travel ideas, places we should visit, or work for a PR company and are looking for writers to visit, please reach out to customerservice@instinctmagazine.com and address your comments to the Managing Editor.

Photo Of Gay Kiss At Brazil's Sugar Loaf Mountain Causes Several Complaints

Millions of people have complained about the photo of a gay kiss at Brazil’s second most popular tourist spot, but the man in charge of photography says he has no intentions to remove the image.

Sugar Loaf Mountain is second only to Christ the Redeemer in Brazil’s list of tourist attractions and million visit annually, according to The Intercept.

Recently, many visitors have been offended to see the image of two men kissing at the front lobby of the establishment.

When you walk into the waiting room, you are given the option of taking a photo in front of a green screen. You can then ask to have a variety of backgrounds supplied for your photo. Many of these images have then been placed up on the wall as sample photos, and at the direct center of the wall lies one of two men kissing.

Pedro Lotti, the 29-year-old manager of the photo operation company, FTG – Fotográfica, shared with the Intercept why he deliberately placed that photo where everyone could see it.

“I did it specifically because roughly 70% of our employees here are gay, and they experience serious problems here because of this,” Lotti, who isn’t gay, stated.

Lotti shares that it took a while to acquire a photo of two men kissing because gay couples are often afraid of displaying homosexual relationships in public.


A post shared by Cleber Oliveira (@cleber_) on

While LGBTQ people enjoy many of the same legal rights as their straight peers, despite a Brazilian judge ruling in favor of conversion therapy, there is a toxic and violent atmosphere around LGBTQ life in the country.

A report by Grupo Gay de Bahia states that there were 387 Brazilian homicides related to homophobia and transphobia in 2017. In addition, there were 58 suicides related to LGBTQ people in 2017. This is not only a 30% increase from the year before, but it makes Brazil one of the most openly hostile countries for LGBTQ people in the world.

Eventually though, Lotti did find a couple willing to not only kiss in a photo, but consent to having their image placed in the middle of the sample pictures wall.

Unfortunately, Lotti and his employees have now dealt with complaints and anger on a regular basis..

“We get complaints every day. They typically complain, specifically, that the photo is in the line of vision for children, and are angry that their kids specifically have seen the photo,” Lotti explains to The Intercept.


A post shared by Tadeu Ramos (@tadeu_ramos10) on

He also shares the point that there are several pictures of straight couples kissing, but “nobody ever complained about those.”

“The problem,” Lotti said, “is always with the parents, not the kids. Depending on how the parents respond, that determines whether the kids react positively or negatively.”

That said, Lotti did share that there have been a few good moments. Though far and in-between, some parents have responded with love and understanding when children asked them about the photo of two men kissing.

With Brazil becoming an increasingly dangerous place for LGBTQ people, it’s the words and actions of those few parents and Lotti that could slowly edge away at the hate.

h/t: The Intercept

Travel Thursday: Explore The Water Sports, Gay Spaces, And Local Atmosphere At Key West

At the southernmost point of the United States of America, there lies an island full of culture, fun, and small town atmosphere.

The island of Key West originated as a close-knit community and artistic hub before revamping into a vacation destination in the mid-twentieth century. On top of that, the island has a strong gay community and appeal for vacationers. That makes it the perfect place to write about for Instinct Magazine’s Travel Thursday section.

So, if you’re looking for the best spot to plan your next vacation, here’s some info about why you should pick Key West.

Where to Stay

There are several LGBTQ-friendly resorts and inns on the island. The one I was fortunate enough to stay at was the Equator Resort.

The Equator Resort is a beautiful men's only resort with a definite gay vacay feel. What I mean by that is that it doesn’t shy away from the environment being about the merging of relaxation and sexual exploration. A kind/efficient staff compliment the spacious well decorated rooms all with private bathrooms and eleven complimentary gay porn television channels and don't forget the backyard clothing optional pool area.

Related Post: Can You Say NO To Gay Hookup Culture (And Still Love It Anyway)?

If you want a less sexual resort/inn or are traveling with family, you can look into The Gardens Hotel.

The Gardens Hotel is just as spacious and luxurious as the Equator Resort, but it also has the added plus of being on an absolutely beautiful lot. There is plenty of plant life and animal life surrounding the hotel insuring your vacation photos will be beautiful.

What to Experience: Water Sports

You've found a place to stay now on this beautiful island at the end of Route 1, but what’s there to do in Key West?

Key West, being an island, has a whole bunch of water around it and therefore a great many water oriented activities and sports to enjoy. Fury Water Adventures offers a variety of high-adrenaline activities. If you want to experience just about everything you can on the water, go with Fury and look up its Ultimate Adventure – an action-packed day that includes parasailing, jet skiing, kayaking and snorkeling.

I got to enjoy snorkeling with Fury Water Adventures and jetskiing with Barefoot Billy's Jet Ski Tour. Both adventures were incredible with adrenaline intense activity and a fun/personable staff helping out every step of the way.

Possibly the most interesting water activities out of the bunch was night kayaking. While you can jet ski anywhere in the world, the night kayaking and paddle boarding by Ibis Bay Paddle Sports was particularly dynamic. Paddling away as we watched crabs, fish, and lobsters hang out below us was an experience I’ll never forget.



I also have to give a shout out to the Blu Q Sunset Sail, a gay owned sail boat tour. We were on the Blu Q to enjoy the Key West Sunset. There's something about the sky turning into the same rainbow colors as the flag flying above the ship’s bow that felt special to me. Check out the boomerang below as well as this statement from Captain Steve:

Key West's longest running all gay charter.

22 Years ago, I left my home in Texas to follow my passion.  That passion, sailing, literally brought me to the shores of Key West.  The day I landed ashore, I realized this was my new home and the beginning of a dream to finally do what I loved.  Growing from two six passenger sail boats and running part time trips, I eventually found the perfect boat, Blu Q.  Thousands of lasting memories later created by my wonderful and loyal customers, Blu Q has truly been woven into the fabric our our island community.  Please join me and my crew for what many have said was the best day of their vacation.  Let us share our personal and intimate experience on the water doing what we truly love to do.  - Blu Q



A post shared by Devin Randall (@devjackran) on


The Delectable Food of Key West

I’ll be honest, Key West is an expensive place. Even the locals usually carry two or three jobs to afford calling this paradise home.

The food is no different in that sense, but it's not impossible. Many restaurants post their menu outside their door for you to see what's offered and how much they cost. On top of that, there are cheap options out there.

But if you wan to splurge a little and enjoy the fine dining experience, you can work your way there too. If you save up before you go, or are just stacked to begin with, you can partake in the plethora of delicious food this island culinary delight has to offer.

Here are some dishes from restaurants that I enjoyed during my stay.

Experience: The “Pink Triangle”

Once you’ve packed away some food and gotten yourself ready for a night of drinks, dancing, and dudes, it’ll be time to head over to Duval Street and the Pink Triangle.

Duval Street is "the downtown street” in Key West, running completely across the island from the north side to its southern side, from water to water. At night time, this street is covered with tourists and locals alike who are looking to enjoy the nightlife on the island. This is especially true around the Pink Triangle.

The Pink Triangle of Duval Street is home to several gay clubs and bars (and even the Gay Key West Visitors Center). This location is full of spots where gay men (and only gay men in several bars) go to party and maybe meet that special someone for the night, a nice Key West hookup. 

Sone of these Pink Triangle hot spots include 

Key West is known for a fantastic drag scene. 801 and Aqua are home to two of the best shows you may ever see.




Experience: Gay Male Spaces

As I’ve touched on in other sections, there is an intense sexual atmosphere in Key West. Several of the men’s only bars and resorts have a gay sex scene feel to them.

One particular spot of note was the Island House Resort. It's another place to stay in addition to the ones mentioned above or you could just decide to visit Island House as a day visitor, like if it were a bathhouse.

The Island House resort is decked out with a large (clothing optional) pool area, sauna, fully stocked bar, and more. Not only is this location a great spot for tourists to relax and have fun, but it’s a well-known spot for locals to gather together and enjoy paradise.

Every Sunday and Wednesday, the Island House becomes THE spot for gay men to gather, socialize, and drink. Island locals and tourists join together to enjoy themselves in this social setting that most bathhouses today have sadly left behind.


If men are not on your list of sweets you're craving, there are the caloric ones to enjoy, too.

Key West is the home of the Key Lime pie, and I for sure had my fill, with each slice tasting different than the rest. And if you’re not a fan of the local lime treat, don’t worry. Key West is an island chock-full of desserts. Check out a few I tried down below.


Experience: Locals & Tours

What’s great about Key West is that it is complex and dynamic. While you can enjoy the typical tourist spots and water sports or the gay vacation spots, you can also enjoy the history, culture, and small town side of the island, too.

If you visit Key West, take the time to talk to some of the locals on the island. Once you’ve met them, you’re sure to see them all over the island.

My first stop on the island was at Papa’s Pilar, a rum distillery named after famous islander Ernest Hemingway. The tour of the distillery also included a history lesson about Hemingway’s love of the island, how he named himself Papa, how he forced everyone to call him that, why his boat was called the Pilar, and how the rum got named after both.

The staff at the distillery were so kind, informed us about the island’s history, and were knowledgeable about the technical side of creating alcohol making this a tour I HIGHLY recommend for anyone visiting the island.

On top of that, I befriended some of the workers at the distillery and imagine my surprise when I later ran into one while hanging out in one of the gay bars. Small island.

Of course, that’s not the only tour on the island. If you want to be guided around the island and shown all its history, culture, and natural beauty, there are plenty of tours to do that. I was fortunate enough to explore it all while on these tours:

  • A tour of Hemingway’s Home - There's a great artistic history and community in Key West. For instance, Ernest Hemingway lived and wrote in Key West for nearly 10 years! He became a community leader and his Whitehead street home later became a popular tourist spot. Walk the halls where he once lived, learn about his time on the island, and pet one of the six-toed cats who are now the great-grandchildren of the cats Hemingway once owned.
  • A museum tour for famous playwright Tennessee Williams - The goal of this museum is to keep the legacy alive of one of the greatest American playwrights of the last century. It offers visitors an entertaining and informative self-guided tour as well as curator led tours to absorb information about Williams's life, career, and devotion to his sister Rose (who also became an Island resident).
  • A Key Lime bike tour around the island - Key Lime Bike Tours takes riders on a historical journey around the island of Key West. The company provides a fun and informative experience that enables guests to discover the island’s history, architecture, and culture. Stops include Hemingway House, Mallory Square, Key West Historic Seaport, Southernmost Point, Mile Marker 0, Key West Cemetery, Margaritaville and the Key Lime Pie Factory for a slice of frozen Key lime pie.
  • The Butterfly & Nature Conservatory - Walk through an inviting environment filled with hundreds of the most beautiful winged creatures in nature. Guests will discover an impressive collection of flowering plants, colorful birds including flamingos, cascading waterfalls and trees that set the stage for the “flowers of the sky.” Attractions also include a learning center where guests can explore butterfly anatomy, physiology, lifecycle, feeding and the migratory world of the monarch.


Experience: Key West

Two weeks ago, I was blessed with a visit to Key West, and I can say without a doubt that I now plan to go back someday. I enjoyed the gay bars, the water sports, the food, and the local feel of the island. And now I have to get another look.

Key West is a must for any traveler (gay or otherwise).

We'd like to thank fla-keys.com for all of their great support before and during our trip to Key West. They helped us make some great connections. Look them op if you need pointers and as well, see below for some links to the great places we had the chance to visit. 

If you have travel ideas, places we should visit, or work for a PR company and are looking for writers to visit, please reach out to customerservice@instinctmagazine.com and address your comments to the Managing Editor.



Equator Resort Key West
822 Fleming St.
Key West, FL 33040


The Gardens Hotel
526 Angela St.
Key West, FL 33040



801 Cabaret: Sushi and the 801 Girls Drag Show
801 Duval St.
Key West, FL 33040




Hemingway Rum Co.
201 Simonton St.
Key West FL 33040

Ernest Hemingway Home and Museum
907 Whitehead St.
Key West, FL 33040

The Key West Butterfly & Nature Conservatory
1316 Duval St.
Key West, FL 33040

Tennessee Williams Museum
513 Truman Ave. near Duval Street
Key West, FL 33040
http://www.kwahs.org/museums/ tennessee-williams/history-of-tennessee-williams​​

Audubon House and Gardens
205 Whitehead St.
Key West FL

Key Lime Bike Tour
122 Ann St.
Key West, FL 33040



425 Grinnell St.
Key West, FL 33040


Salute! On The Beach
1000 Atlantic Blvd.  
Key West, FL 33040


Breakfast at Blue Heaven
729 Thomas St.
Key West, FL 33040

Dinner and Drag at La Te Da
1125 Duval Street
Key West, FL 33040

245 Front St.
Key West FL 33040

The Stoned Crab
3101 N. Roosevelt Blvd.
Key West, FL 33040

Spencer’s by the Sea (@TheReachResort)
1435 Simonton Street
Key West, Florida 33040


Water Adventure

Fury Water Adventures
245 Front Street
Key West, FL 33040

Blu Q Sunset Sail
Key West, FL 33040

Barefoot Billy’s Jet Ski Tour
Casa Marina Resort
At the corner of Alberta St. & Seminole St.

Night Kayaking/Paddle boarding at Ibis Bay
3101 N. Roosevelt Blvd.
Key West FL 33040

Pack Up Because An LGBTQ Touring Company Is Offering A "Call Me By Your Name" Tour

Are you a fan of Call Me By Your Name? Well, it might be time to live out the movie you so wonderfully enjoy.

Quiiky Tours is the first Italian company to specialize in LGBTQ-themed travel. According to NewNowNext, the company has announced that they’re now offering a Call Me By Your Name themed tour.

Call Me By Your Name was an Oscar winning film from last year that focused on a Jewish-Italian boy named Elio (played by Oscar nominee Timothée Chalamet) as he explored his sexuality and fell in love with a man, 24-year-old graduate student Oliver played by Armie Hammer, for the first time.

Now, fans of the movie can explore the real-life backdrops from scenes in the movie like Milan, Crema, Garda Lake, Verona, Venice, and Bergamo.

Fans will be able to sit at the same table where Elio and Oliver relaxed in Crema’s Duomo Square. They’ll also get to take bicycle tours in the Lodi countryside before dancing to “Love My Way” in Bergamo. Heads up though, you won't be able to visit the villa where Elio's family lived because that building's being sold.

If this all sounds interesting to you, here’s some info you'll need to know before you start planning your tour.

Tour prices start at €1,990 (about $2,300) per person. That price includes 9 days and 8 nights in Italy, hotel stays, car rental for driving around, 8 buffet breakfasts, a guided tour through most of the cities and towns, entrance to museums, entrance to archeological sites, wine tastings, and other accommodations.

If all of this sounds interesting to you, you can click here to start your Call Me By Your Name tour.

h/t: NewNowNext

California Bans State-Funded Travel to Oklahoma Due To Anti-LGBT Law

On the first day of Pride Month 2018, it was announced that California is banning state-funded and state-sponsored travel to yet another state as a result of discriminatory legislation.

On Friday, California Attorney General Xavier Becerra made the announcement in a statement obtained by USA Today.

Under a 2017 CA law, the state’s attorney general is required by to keep a list of all states subject to a travel ban because of “laws that authorize or require discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression.”

The Oklahoma bill in question, signed into law by Gov. Mary Fallin last month, allows adoption and foster care agencies to reject same-sex couples on the grounds of religious beliefs.

"California taxpayers are taking a stand against bigotry and in support of those who would be harmed by this prejudiced policy," said Becerra.

Michael McNutt, a spokesperson for Fallin, defended the Oklahoma law later on Friday. "There appears to be more and more Californians sharing our values as we are seeing more Californians move to Oklahoma,” he said in a statement. "With our state’s economy being as strong as it is, we won’t miss a few Californians traveling on state business showing up in our state.”

An anti-LGBTQ+ adoption bill similar to the one in Oklahoma was signed into law in Kansas two weeks ago by Governor Jeff Colyer. Kansas has already been subjected to a California travel ban on the grounds of the 2017 anti-discrimination law, along with Alabama, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee and Texas.

California’s Oklahoma travel ban will go into effect June 22.

h/t: https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2018/06/02/california-bans-travel-oklahoma-due-discriminatory-lgbt-law/666320002/

Travel Thursday: Providence, Rhode Island is Your Next Great Getaway

Late in 2017, Instinct Magazine profiled Providence, Rhode Island as a "gay mecca" of sorts, as their LGBT nightlife is one of the best in the country. Now, its time to focus on what else this wonderful city has to offer, which happens to be one of the few major ones where a car really isn't needed (to a certain degree).

As someone who went to school there for five years, its a city that I'm very familiar with and have come to grow and love as time has gone by. The city of Providence itself is always "under construction" as they are consistently building upon itself to make it one of the go to cities that anyone in the world should visit. Sure, New York City and Boston are wonderful, but there's nothing wrong with going in between those two big slices of bread and enjoying the meat and cheese qualities that Provi brings (not sure if that analogy made sense, but just go with it).

For one, the Amtrak train station is located right in the heart of downtown Providence. Immediately when you exit you will see Providence Place Mall (one of the biggest in the Northeast) in front of you, and an assortment of large scale buildings that is reminiscent of big cities like New York City and Chicago. Something that those cities don't have that Providence does is a rustic and more down to earth quality to it due to its rich and vibrant colors and peaceful vibes that make it a lot less hectic to travel through compared to the others.

It's hard to figure out where to begin so let me help you navigate the city. There are three important parts to Providence that are a must when you visit. For one, there is downtown. Downtown is generally a college-focused area, as many schools like Johnson & Wales University and Rhode Island School of Design are located here. That doesn't make it a plethora of annoying college kids per se, but you will definitely find many of them strolling through downtown as you yourself navigate through the variety of wonderful boutique shops, restaurants and fabulous nightlife that includes some wonderful LGBTQ establishments.

One restaurant that are worth the recommendation and then some include Oberlin, which highlights some incredibly delicious and sharable modern American food like their Crispy Sunchokes, Sweet Potato Ravioli and more. If you head more to the west end of Providence, which is about a 5-10 minute walk from downtown, then you can find a great brunch eatery in Nick's on Broadway that will give you all that you need for this type of a meal including their amazing Buttermilk Hotcakes. Yum. 

Federal Hill is another fabulous area to head to while in Providence, as it's Italian background is seen throughout the area and especially at the restaurants you will dine at. A great example of this is Massimo, which is literally described as an "Italy to Table" type of experience that includes some mouthwatering dishes like their Bruschetta con Prosciutto and so much more. 


Finally, the College Hill area of Providence where Brown University is happens to be such an incredible part of this fascinating city. If there is one street that you must walk down, it is Thayer Street, which houses some of the best freaking restaurants i have ever been to. The area itself is superbly gorgeous, and a great spot to chill in during the summer time as it gets a ton of foot traffic. Located right around this area is PVDonuts, which houses some of the best donuts I have ever had (and most creative), including their scrumptious Birthday Cake Donut.

Going to Providence goes beyond eating (I love food as you can tell) and into many other facets that makes this city great. Want to go shopping? Providence Place Mall, as mentioned earlier, is a huge shopping mall that has all the stores you could possibly imagine under one roof. The Dunkin Donuts Center hosts a variety of concerts and events, including my husband Thomas Rhett in September.

If you go to Providence towards the fall, then WaterFire will definitely be something you will want to stop by and see, as the city literally becomes lit up with beautiful orange and yellow colors that make the area look stunning at night. If you are a history or a zoo kind of guy or gal, then the RISD Museum or the Roger Williams Park Zoo is your place to go. Essentially, this city has it all, its up to you though to get there and see for yourself just how wonderful it is. 

For more information on Providence, please check out their official site

If you have travel ideas, places we should visit, or work for a PR company and are looking for writers to visit, please reach out to customerservice@instinctmagazine.com and address your comments to the Managing Editor.

Travel Thursday: 5 Gay Bars You Must Visit When Visiting NYC

Gay bars run the muck in Manhattan, and even though several iconic locations have closed down over the years, there are still plenty that are open and thriving in the city that never sleeps.

New York City is still one of the most amazing places for the LGBTQ community to visit and live in, as there is always something going on for all of us to enjoy.  But where are the best spots to go to when it comes to experiencing all you can for a great night out in Manhattan?  Take a look at five places that we think you will enjoy the most during your next trip to NYC. 

Boxers: 37 W. 20th Street & 742 9th Avenue 

Boxers is one of the few gay sports bars in Manhattan, just on a much larger scale space wise and they have two locations in Chelsea & Hell’s Kitchen.  Boxers has become quite the staple in The Big Apple, as it hosts a huge crowd nightly due to its clean atmosphere, smoking hot shirtless bartenders, great food (including Brunch) and so much more.  With fun events like “Music Video Mondays” and great happy hour deals throughout the week, Boxers has easily become one of the biggest and most known gay bars in New York City over a short period of time.  More info here.

Therapy Lounge: 348 W. 52nd Street 

Open for almost 15 years, Therapy is a bi-level and super friendly establishment that hosts some of the best drag parties during the week and an all-night extravaganza called Insomnia Fridays with DJ AJ Sanchez to kick off the weekend. Boxers and Therapy have one major thing in common that sets them apart from the other gay bars in the area: they serve food, like... really, really good food.  So if you want to eat a delicious cobb salad while kicking back and enjoying a fabulous drag show, then Therapy is the place to be. More info here.

The Eagle NYC: 554 W. 28th Street

If there is ever a place to go to in NYC where the word “leather” and “gay bar” intertwine with one another so beautifully, then the Eagle is the place to go.  Dimly lit, raw, unfiltered and uninhibited describe what this location is all about.  They have nights dedicated to all sorts of fetishes like feet, jockstraps, hankies and so much more that will require an R rating once you walk into this well-known establishment.  Consider this your updated version of the Al Pacino classic, Cruising.  More info here.

Ty's: 114 Christopher Street

Ty’s is a Christopher Street institution that has been around for almost fifty years, which is quite impressive given how lots of locations open and close within a couple of months on the island of Manhattan.  Ty’s attracts an older, bearish crowd who happen to have the baseball cap-worn-jeans-fitted tee look down.  Keeping in tradition with the older mindset, a lot of their events are geared towards a more mature crowd, such as celebrating the birthdays of Smashing Pumpkins singer Billy Corgan and The Cure musician Robert SmithMore info here.

Gym Sportsbar: 167 8th Avenue

Gym is an important location to include on the list, as it’s practically the last gay bar on 8th Avenue in Chelsea.  This particular avenue used to be the location for several incredible gay bars, many of which have gone their way of the dodo bird, but Gym has remained open for a variety of reasons.  It is a great starting off spot to get your night going, and their Happy Hour drink specials are simply fantastic.  It also creates a fun and friendly environment throughout, with a great basement space for those who want a quieter and more intimate setting.  More info here

If you have travel ideas, places we should visit, or work for a PR company and are looking for writers to visit, please reach out to customerservice@instinctmagazine.com and address your comments to the Managing Editor.