Welcome to Gay guide to Buenos Aires! In this city you will find a mix between the elegance of the Europe capitals and the spirit of South America . The city was founded by immigrants that came mostly in the XIX century from Italy, Spain, France, Germany, UK, etc. Visiting Buenos Aires, you will experience a sort of "deja vù" of Europe while you explore the grand boulevards, expansive parks, magnificent architecture, and ever-changing fashion of Argentina's beautiful capital.
We encourage you to take a gay walk through Buenos Aires neighborhoods like Recoleta, Palermo (Soho, Hollywood, Las Cañitas), and San Telmo you'll be persuaded that you're in the Paris 16th District. Porteños, -as Buenos Aires citizens are called-, feel with a sort of pride being the most European of South American.Do not get confused by the architecture of the city, you are still in South America. It may appear in some areas to be a civilized city with an European scent, but you will soon notice porteño`s evident behavior. Specially in issues like the traffic (they drive like hell, I think that was inherited from Italians / Spaniards), the warm way they live their relationships with family and friends (Porteños boys give a kiss to greet other males -not only gay guys, even straight ones kiss each other in the cheek-), the passionate way they speak using their hands to talk, the importance they gave to family and friends, and principally the social and political structure of this beautiful city.
While exploring straight and gay Buenos Aires, you will find a city of contradictions. Great wealth usually exists alongside considerable -if most times hidden-poverty. The economy was terrible for some years after 2001 crisis, but has recovered very fast (and you can notice it in shops, bars, restaurants and clubs). Anyway during 2001 big crash hotels and restaurants remained inexplicably full. Porteños can be self-assured, even though the population this high ego and insecurity at the same time. They will always ask if you liked the city, the country, the wine, the asado, the local gay guys, etc. While the center of Gay life is in Buenos Aires, and the city defines Argentina for travelers, it has little to do with the rest of the country. All these elements demonstrate the complexity of a city searching for identity among its South American and European influences. And they make Buenos Aires an unusual and fascinating place to visit.
Gay Buenos Aires:
Buenos Aires became a very popular gay travel destination in the 2000´s. The media started to call it the gay mecca of Latin America. Gay and gay friendly hotels, apartment rentals, etc, flourished in that decade. This is probably one of the most open-minded cities in Latin America. It has also a unique European feel, and used to be very cheap because of the crisis (inflation in the last years has made it a more expensive destination). The guys are very hot, a mix of Italian, some Spaniards, German, French, Irish English.
In recent years there has been huge progress with several anti-discrimination and gay rights laws being passed. In 1996 measures forbidding discrimination on the basis of amongst other things sexual orientation were introduced, making Buenos Aires the first Spanish-speaking city in Latin America to do so. In 2002 same sex civil unions were approved in Buenos Aires. Finally in 2009 the Argentine Congress approved Gay marriage Law, giving full equal rights "with the same names" to gay couples. In 2010, the argentine Congress, aproved same saxe marriage "with the same rights". So, not only Buenos Aires has gay civil unions, but now people in the whole country, can inherit, adopt, etc. (Law 26.416).Argentina gay community is very lively and active, specially in Buenos Aires and other big cities along the country. Gay Argentina main Pride Parade is held in Buenos Aires the 1st Saturday of November of each year, to mark the formation of the first-ever gay group in Buenos Aires in 1969.
Clive Sanders website editor of London Gay Times Travel says:
"Buenos Aires is probably the most liberal and gay friendly city in Latin America. Here you will find a large and sophisticated gay scene.
We were very impressed with Buenos Aires which has a gay scene that we felt compared very favorably to any similar sized city in Europe or North America. There are loads of gay bars, restaurants and clubs, several saunas and even a raunchy sex club. The only down side is that being a Latin country everything is of course really late and most bars don't get started until well after midnight."
"We think the combination of a vibrant scene and a distinct "European" feel will make gay and lesbian visitors comfortable.
Recent liberalization in the laws effecting gays and lesbians plus the devaluation of the Peso has prompted a boom in gay tourism particularly from the United States. "