Hawaii 411

BY Ed Salvato

February 08 2011 4:00 AM ET

 Everybody knows Honolulu has the only real gay nightlife in the state of Hawaii, but did you know you can find an authentic island experience — that’s still gay — without limiting yourself to sipping mai tais from a balcony overlooking Kapahulu Avenue? Next time you’re island bound, be sure to book one of the catamaran cruises hosted by Hula’s Bar and Lei Stand (the city’s best-known gay bar). This booze cruise, which costs $20, takes off nearly every Saturday afternoon from Waikiki and offers one of the best views of the iconic shoreline—including Diamond Head—as you skim over crystal clear water. There’s wildlife everywhere (both on board and in the ocean) and you might even see a humpback in whale season. Better yet, your catamaran ticket means free post-voyage drinks back at the bar. Be sure to book in advance. Hulas.com

Suite Heart
I love Kimpton Hotels, and not only because this company has inns and restaurants in just about every U.S. city I visit, but because this San Francisco–based hotelier is dedicated to showing real appreciation to its dedicated LGBT clientele. Reserve your room through the Kimpton Red Ribbon Campaign and get a 15% discount off the advertised rate, with Kimpton donating $10 to a local HIV/AIDS charity for every night of your stay. Last year the company donated $150,000 through the program (nearly doubling the 2009 amount). That means 15,000 nights were booked by people who care about making a difference. Sounds like the kind of crowd I want to stay with. KimptonHotels.com


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