The Royal Palms, North America’s Largest Luxury Gay Resort, Opens in Fort Lauderdale
This famous Fort Lauderdale property was recently transformed from award-winning guesthouse into sleek, full-service luxe boutique hotel.
Contemporary Euro style meets tropical splendor at the new Royal Palms, a stunning reinvention that’s poised to change the face of the city’s hotel market. The long-time gay favorite unveils its expansion to 62 rooms April 11 – courtesy of two additional buildings that underwent head-to-toe renovations. The makeover also added two heated swimming pools (one clothing-optional), a bar/grill, spa and fitness center, all just one block from Fort Lauderdale Beach.
Guest rooms vibrate with pops of color against a white backdrop; rain showers spill onto pebbled floors; and original artworks from photographer Dennis Dean hit a sensual note. All rooms come with 42-inch flat-screen TVs, and the signature orchid blossoms still accompany each stay—along with complimentary WiFi throughout the property, and access to iPad 2s, mobile phones, white bicycles and the ultimate guest amenity: a sleek 54-foot private luxury yacht, available for guest excursions, celebrations and commitment ceremonies.
"It was time to take gay accommodations to the next level,” says Richard Gray, who was instrumental in putting Fort Lauderdale on the gay destination map when he opened the Royal Palms in 1991. “While many boutique hotels have begun catering to the gay market, our new hotel uniquely combines world-class luxury with the sexy, social vibe that will never be found at mainstream or ‘straight-friendly’ hotels.
GG’s Bar and Grill is the open-air showpiece of the front building, with ruby-red glass tiles, misters, and a polished concrete bar overlooking one of the pools. Steel, grey and black patio furniture and stylish poolside cabanas add to the scene. A spa with wet room and massage rooms for single or double use and a fitness center ensure guests can get appropriately relaxed or pumped before exploring the city’s gay nightlife.