In general we've not been a fan of the way Chicago and the state of Illinois have been marketed as tourist destinations. But they must be doing something right when it comes to attracting gay and lesbian travelers. In San Francisco-based Community Marketing Inc.'s annual ranking of the most popular gay and lesbian vacation destinations released today, Chicago tied with Los Angeles and Las Vegas for third place, right behind No. 1-ranked New York City and second-place San Francisco. Washington, D.C. ranked sixth.
Chicago appears to be especially popular with younger gay men. The Windy City was the fourth-highest-ranked city among gay travelers 18 to 35, and fifth-ranked among gay men 36 to 54. It did not make the top five among gay travelers 55-plus. The survey was based on data from 4,800 respondents who were asked the question: Where did you travel in the past twelve months and spend at least one night in a hotel.