In 2011, Tel Aviv was named the best gay-friendly city of the year. The merit award is part of Adir Steiner, who since 2008 promoted the city as a tourism center LGBT (collective composed of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender). Steiner visited Montevideo in the framework of the international workshop on LGBT tourism “Uruguay naturally friendly”, organized by the Ministry of Tourism and Sport.
Our school Spanish Uruguay joins this purpose the Ministry of Tourism and invites gay community to enjoy the Spanish language courses. Tradition we have in our classrooms have received numerous gay groups worldwide.
For XIMENA GERMAN (El Pais Digital, summary)
- What has to have a city to be “gay friendly”?
The first thing has to happen to a city for LGBT tourism destination is that a massive amount of LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) out of the closet. In Tel Aviv this mass out of the closet started in the 80′s. Then we began to be visible. Visibility is, for example, take to the streets in the Pride Parade, so that event is so important in the world because it is an opportunity for us to say “we’re here.” Then there is the law. In South America began with gay marriage in Argentina. In Uruguay has also been progress. The following is changing society
And at the level of facilities or infrastructure, what things are necessary?
It’s not enough to bring gay tourism to the country to be progressive. Sweden is one of the most progressive countries in the world for civil rights. But there will be a gay destination, if not create something attractive with its resources, as a winter resort gay. Gay people want to go to interesting places, where there are things to do, parties, pubs. To this must be an effort. We did it for years without thinking about tourism, we begin to develop until 2009. The most important thing was to generate the Pride events. It started as something small and is now the biggest events in the year. It is celebrated for a week, at the end of which is a parade with 100,000 participants in the street held
-Montevideo is a very conservative and at times sexist, is it possible it takes to attract gay tourism?
Of course. It happens in many traditional cities of the world, is a process, it will here too. Here are gay activists, gay businesses, gay community began to create and support needs and budget for activities
- What recommendations would you make to Montevideo?
I do not know, spent two days and I know so much. Uruguay But I think the best place to start is Punta del Este because it is already known and successful in tourism. You can start with a gay weekend. There are a gay beach and places and is easy to attract people from neighboring areas of Brazil and Argentina. If promoting a weekend or week attractive gay parties, events and shows will come. And after a while and will grow very soon to be sold outside of Latin America, United States. That’s one reason why Tel Aviv triumphed because it is a place outside of Europe, surrounded by areas not gay friendly, and are surprised when they hear that there is a gay friendly city. Then they want to see it and experience it.
- Is it necessary to establish a separate time?
-Gay people want the same as any tourist: a good hotel and being treated well. But they also want things interesting for them. Young people are very fond of gay parties and gay parties want, feel comfortable, meet other gays, have experiences with others in the world. If you do not give it, they will not come … Mendoza is a good example. Gay people organized a wine festival gay. The festival was traditionally heterosexual, but they took the traditional sense and put gay spirit and became a popular destination. We did that in Tel Aviv, the change to make it friendly and attractive to put gays in the map.
Spanish Uruguay Gay Friendly