The New York State Assembly passed a historic same-sex marriage amendment last month (right before Pride weekend, no less!), paving the way for gays and lesbians to legally wed as early as this Sunday, July 24. Whether you’re going to race down to City Hall or sashay through Saint Patrick’s Cathedral (kidding!), we’ve got you covered with a multi-part guide to LGBT weddings in the Big Apple. Now you just have to pop the question!
- New York Wedding Guide, Part II: Bachelor/Bachelorette Parties
- New York Weddings Guide, Part III: Rehearsal Dinners & Receptions
Today we’re looking at hotels and inns to stay at if you’re coming to New York City for a same-sex ceremony or you need to find a place for out-of-town guests. You might also consider one for the ceremony itself—or a pre- or post-wedding getaway just for you and your honey. Of course if you are already over the weddings rainbow, you can always just plan a great getaway at any one of these gay-friendly hotels, even if you might wanna wait until it cools down a bit–or pick a hotel with a roof deck pool!
Let your guests turn your wedding into a New York weekend getaway: this sleek new addition to the hotel scene is a stone’s throw from the Empire State Building, Macy’s and the heart of Chelsea—and an easy jaunt to most Broadway theaters. It’s got something of a rock-star reputation, with hipsters haunting the Breslin restaurant and John Dory bar, and record players and guitars in most suites. (Just don’t let your guests trash their rooms!)
The Chelsea Mews Guest House
Where to board your super-slutty ex? This petite men-only guesthouse is clothing-optional, with eight rooms and an in-house massage therapist to relieve “tension.” On the chaster side, they also offer free bicycle tours, a songbird aviary and no set checkout time. (Score!)
The Chelsea Pines Inn
The perfect place to send Uncle Charlie and his “roommate,” this charming gay-owned guesthouse is something of a time machine: It’s actually a converted rowhouse dating from the 1850s (back when 14th Street was the northern end of the city) and each room honors icons from Golden Age of Hollywood (Doris Day, Paul Newman, Rosalind Russell, etc). Be sure your guests don their ruby slippers before logging on in the business center—it’s an homage to Judy Garland!
If your friends or family want to get in some New York-grade shopping before the big day (or you don’t approve of their outfit), this über-luxe Meatpacking District hotel is a winner. The infamous Jeffrey is just around the corner, as are ateliers from Stella McCartney, Diane von Furstenberg and Alexander McQueen. They can get done up for the wedding at the in-house Exhale Spa and Hiro Haraguchi Hair + Make-up Salon, recharge with lunch at Pastis, Morimoto, or Chelsea Market, or do drinks at one of the many primarily straight nightclubs in the nabe. For a gay old time, you don’t even have to leave the hotel: Marco Ovando hosts the Rooftop Pool & Social Club at the Gansevoort every Sunday night through the warm-weather season.
This four-star boutique hotel on the far west side of Hell’s Kitchen is part of the Kimpton family, so you know it’s trés gay-friendly. (The chain gives beaucoup bucks to LGBT charities, offers same-sex-wedding packages and even has special rewards programs and concierges for their gay guests.) Ninth Avenue’s dining mecca is just blocks away, as are queer nightspots like Industry, Vlada and the Ritz.
The Loews Regency
Don’t want to rush your special day? The Loews “Happily Ever After” package is available through December 30 and comes complete with a wedding planner, an overnight stay in the honeymoon suite, and champagne and chocolate-covered strawberries for the happy couple. Live a little—you can worry about the calories later!
The Maritime Hotel
Close to Chelsea’s main drag but far enough away your party-hearty guests won’t get shitfaced before the ceremony, the Maritime offers well-appointed nautical-inspired rooms rooms, two top-notch restaurants and the Hiro Ballroom dance club. If you plan for a Saturday ceremony, you won’t have to entertain your guests on Sunday: On the Lord’s Day, the hotel’s cabanas play host to Summer Camp, Michael Cohen’s swanky tea dance and one of the hottest rooftop parties around. (The view of the city is almost as appealing as the one on the deck itself.) And if you want to have the ceremony there, the hotel will waive the venue fee—just book by December for a ceremony between now and July 2012.
Room Mate Grace Hotel: If your dad is still having trouble accepting that you and your girlfriend share the same bed, this modern design-minded hotel near Rockefeller Center and Bryant Park has a swim-up bar, so Pops can drown his lingering misgivings with a few Old Fashioneds while he floats serenely in the pool. And the small but chic rooms are available at reasonable rates, so your folks won’t have to shell out a fortune for a stay. (Let them save that for the wedding!)
Both the Union Square and Midtown East locations of this swank chain are getting in on the gay-nuptials action with “Right to Unite” packages offering a suite, suit or dress steaming, a custom wedding cake, champagne, a flip camera to capture the blessed affair and car service to and from City Hall. (Bride or groom not included.) And they’ve gotten a gold star from The Travel Alternatives Group (TAG), which qualifies hotels as LGBT-friendly based on employment and corporate policies.