News Around the Republic of Mexico
|Mexico Wants 'Pink Tourism'|
go to original
July 29, 2010
Mexico City - Mexico City's gay community has in recent decades turned the capital into a relative oasis in a strongly Catholic country renowned for its conservatism and machismo.
|Mexican capital aims to be oasis for gay tourists. (video by Agence France-Presse)|
The authorities in the Mexican capital are now seeking to attract gay tourism, even though there is still widespread discrimination against them. The city is well placed 'to become the first gay friendly destination in Latin America,' said tourism secretary, Alejandro Rojas.
In March, the urban sprawl of some 20 million people celebrated the first legal gay and lesbian weddings in Latin America. And this week, authorities said they had opened the first tourism office for homosexuals in the region. Gay tourists are discerning, respectful and spend 47 per cent more than heterosexual tourists, Mr Rojas said.
His leftist city government last week offered a free honeymoon here to the first gay couple to wed in Argentina after that country legalised same-sex marriages in the whole country.
In Mexico City's Zona Rosa district, a hub for the homosexual community, gay actor Tito Vasconcelos applauded the advances but underlined that 'there's a lack of consistency between statements and reality,' for Mexico's gay community.
Mr Vasconcelos, the owner of Los Cabaretitos chain of discotheques, was among a small group who joined a student protest in 1978 in the first public appearance of the gay and lesbian community here. Last June, more than 400,000 people took part in the capital's annual gay pride march. 'There's a lot more to do,' Mr Vasconcelos said. 'One of the most important things is training for justice officials,' he said, adding many did not know how to respond to attacks on gay people.