For many years now, New York City has seemed like a vortex – the very center of the world. And while Manhattan may walk away with all the glory, it’s the beguiling borough of Brooklyn that’s quietly but steadily coming into its own. NYC is considered one of the world’s greatest gay-friendly cities, but few know that it’s Brooklyn that has always been at the epicenter. That’s why so many gay travelers to the city are now seeking out gay friendly hotels in Brooklyn to stay for witnessing the hipster-led LGBTQ renaissance in full swing in the historic borough. These range from stunning boutique hotels to larger brands with gay-friendly outposts the world over. Most of the gay bars in the borough lie in the happening Williamsburg neighborhood.
What’s more, Brooklyn hosts some of the most major LGBTQ+ events in the city. Even though NYC’s Pride, one of the World’s Biggest Pride Parades, takes place in Manhattan, Brooklyn saw the Brooklyn Liberation March in 2020. In fact, it’s the largest transgender-rights demonstration in LGBTQ history! Plus, the borough also has the sensory overload that is the House of Yes which hosts the wildest parties on the planet.
Despite being part of the larger fabric of New York City, there’s so much more to do and explore in Brooklyn too. Its most iconic sight is, of course, the Brooklyn Bridge, which is one of the Top Things To Do In New York City. There’s also the Brooklyn Bridge Park, Brooklyn Museum, the gorgeous Brooklyn Botanical Gardens, and so much more. If you’re planning a trip to NYC, then Brooklyn should feature extensively on your itinerary. To that end, here are the top 11 gay friendly hotels in Brooklyn.
The William Vale Hotel
Few hotels in the city can live up to the aura of The William Vale Hotel, one of the chicest and hottest gay friendly hotels in Brooklyn. Tucked in the vibrant Williamsburg, it lies just one street away from the East River and three streets away from the cluster of Brooklyn’s fabulous gay bars. So, it’s no surprise that it’s also one of the Top Gay-Friendly Hotels In New York City! The stunning boutique hotel boasts light and futuristic interiors with lots of blond wood, dove greys, and discrete geometric details. The best feature is the floor-to-ceiling glass walls that offer incredible views. However, its absolute highlight is the rooftop pool, which is the largest outdoor pool in any NYC hotel! The equally massive deck is peppered with plush loungers for you to laze around after a refreshing swim.
That’s not all. Sitting right next to it is the gay-popular Westlight, NYC’s most dazzling rooftop bar with never-seen-before 360-degree views of Brooklyn and Manhattan. Aside from a high-tech gym that overlooks the pool, there’s even a full-service concierge desk that dishes out the best local travel tips. Besides a famed donuts outpost, the food in the hotel’s Italian restaurant is to die for. Even breakfast with cheese and herb frittatas, pastries, and house-pressed juices is a paid but decadent affair.
It seems that 2001: A Space Odyssey was the inspiration for the rooms at William Vale. The piece de resistant is the giant cube-like bathroom that glows in the evening and has sliding black-and-white glass doors. The glowing edge details also exist on the wardrobe and in the huge private balcony with alfresco seating and East River views. Rounding up the trappings is a custom-filled fridge, L’Occitane en Provence toiletries, and swish mod-cons.
Stay in the heart of hip Brooklyn at Nu Hotel, one of the hippest gay hotels in Brooklyn. This affordable and no-frills Brooklyn hotel has oodles of urban character and décor inspired by the surrounding lofts. Aside from a central location that’s within walking distance of Williamsburg, it has an aptly-named bar called Misdemeanor, which is very gay-popular. So, it’s not surprising that this place is a favorite with LGBTQ travelers. An unassuming entrance opens to a small lobby and an open kitchen where drinks and breakfast are served. Breakfast is a hearty affair with DIY teas and coffees, juice cartons, fruit, yogurt, cereals, English muffins, and Brooklyn bagels. What’s more, the staff is helpful and very approachable. Wrapping up the free facilities is the 24-hour gym and the orange soda-colored bikes which you can borrow for exploration.
All the loft-inspired rooms are sexy to boot with Keurig coffeemakers and slick rainforest showers in bathrooms. Unique artwork adorns the wall of Nu Perspective category rooms. If you want to splurge, go for the Urban Suite. It’s the best room in the hotel and comes with an in-room hammock. Sigh.
1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge
The star of all gay friendly hotels in Brooklyn is 1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge, which offers spectacular views of the iconic Brooklyn Bridge, the East River, and Downtown Manhattan. Hailed as one of the Most Exclusive Brooklyn Boutique Hotels, 1 Hotel boasts a nature-inspired design with reclaimed wood and native greenery. All in all, it makes for a serene waterfront retreat that feels far removed from NYC’s concrete jungle vibe. In fact, the place overflows with natural materials, complemented by industrial-chic elements such as large metal hanging lamps. The overall feel is trendy which LGBTQ travelers will love, right from the free apples everywhere to floor-to-ceiling windows. The best bit is that the place has a host of eco-conscious elements such as five-minute sand timers in showers as reminders to low-energy bulbs. If that wasn’t enough, it runs entirely on wind energy!
The rest of the hotel is equally impressive and boasts a plethora of facilities. The most impressive of them all is the rooftop pool with phenomenal views of Manhattan. Aside from a gym, it also has a host of social spaces and meeting rooms to mingle with fellow travelers. After a languorous swim and lounge, head to the very popular basement Bamford Haybarn Spa. It features holistic treatments using natural ingredients and makes the hotel one of the Best Spa Hotels in New York City. A Scandi-inspired ground-floor café with an all-day menu completes the food offerings here.
Natural hues and huge windows lend the rooms here an absolute sense of calm. Moreover, the open-plan rooms come with plush hemp mattresses, swish mod-cons, and chic bathrooms. Make sure to upgrade to a room category that promises views of Brooklyn Bridge.
The Williamsburg Hotel
Enviable views of Manhattan’s skyline and a fantastic location close to Williamsburg’s gay bars are what make The Williamsburg Hotel excellent for LGBTQ travelers. Tucked right in the beating heart of Brooklyn, the hotel sits in a striking thin glass and red-brick structure. On the inside, hipster-meets-Wall Street in style – think a central copper bar, Chesterfields, and velvet sofas in jewel hues.
Aside from a very cheery and helpful staff, the headline act here is the rooftop pool. The 40-feet-long stunner, complete with a water bar is one of the most decadent places in the city and is a popular people-watching spot. It’s also what makes the hotel one of the Best NYC Hotels With Rooftop Pools. Other amenities are great too, such as the complimentary tuk-tuk to drop you off to local sights. Finally, the on-site restaurant serves all meals, including a Brooklyn-inspired tea and the likes of lox bagels and avocado toast for breakfast.
The rooms, albeit compact, are very comfortable and colorful, right from aqua bathroom tiles and mustard yellow cushions to brown leather headboards and white linens and walls. Semi-open bathrooms are as naughty as they get, complete with bathrobes and a bathtub for romantic sessions. If you want to splurge, go for the Terrace with a balcony and sweeping views of Manhattan.
Henry Norman Hotel
Set in a former 19th-century textile factory, the Henry Norman Hotel is one of the most stylish gay friendly hotels in Brooklyn. It’s not only within walking distance of Williamsburg’s gay bars, but also it has a complimentary vintage car service that gets you to the cafes, boutiques, and restaurants of the chic Greenpoint. The hotel retains its textile factory roots with high ceilings and bare brick walls. That said, the colorful textiles, Moroccan-tiled floors, and artwork throughout lend it character. Not surprisingly, the service is beyond excellent, as are the amenities. A lower-level lounge has two computers, and there’s even a gym with a steam shower. During summers, the public outdoor terraces are very gay-popular. And even though has no restaurant, it serves coffee and breakfast pastries to begin the day.
The rooms, or rather studio apartments are warm and inviting with plush beds, hardwood floors, and midcentury furniture. All around, you’ll find quirky curios such as weathered copies of The Sound and the Fury and an antique set of scales. You’ll love the vintage wall prints in the bathroom as well as the nice selection of Brooklyn Winery half bottles and Dean & Lucca roasted nuts. We’d recommend that you upgrade to the rooms with private balconies with Manhattan skyline views.
LGBTQ travelers looking for local flavor will love Franklin Guesthouse, which is also one of the overall Best Hotels in Brooklyn, NYC. This charming boutique hotel lies in a handsome white townhouse in the historically Polish and lively neighborhood of North Greenpoint. Check-in is a personal and low-key affair befitting the location, making for the perfect home-away-from-home atmosphere. Social spaces in mint green hues and white-and-blue cityscape screen prints feel inviting. While there’s no breakfast on-site, the staff is more than happy to point you in the direction of numerous excellent places that lie within a stone’s throw. That said, the hotel does have a small gym and sauna and BarGlory, which serves delicious fusion cuisine as well as does room service.
Rooms are akin to lovely studio apartments with mid-century modern furniture, well-equipped kitchenettes, and artful curios. Adding to the luxe feel are marble bathrooms, high ceilings, and minibars stocked with local NY produce such as SlantShack jerky and Sixpoint IPA.
An industrial aesthetic meets Art-Deco style in the Tillary Hotel, one of the best gay friendly hotels in Brooklyn’s Downtown. Tucked at the base of Manhattan Bridge, this stylish and modern hotel has wood flooring, polished concrete walls, and nods to old Brooklyn with vintage photos. Topping everything off is Art Deco touches such as tarnished lamps and gilded wall designs. A warmly lit lobby with gold and deep teal sofas is a delightful place to hobnob with fellow travelers and get travel tips from the friendly staff. A sizeable gym aside, you’ll also find a basement ballroom and a sixth-floor outdoor terrace with views of Manhattan Bridge. A whiskey-focused second-floor bar opens onto a huge beer garden and is a gay-popular summer drinking hotspot. Finally, the sun-kissed lobby cafe is where you dig into a breakfast that includes snacks, cereals, toasted bagels, pastries, and Nobletree coffee.
Bright and sunny rooms, with quieter ones at the back, have grey, black, and white color schemes with a statement wall as the standout. Frette linens, Keurig coffeemakers, and C.O. Bigelow bath products in Carrara marble bathrooms lend a luxurious touch to the place.
The Box House Hotel
Located at the northern end of Greenpoint, the gay-friendly Box House Hotel is an excellent jumping-off point for exploring Brooklyn and beyond. The quirky hotel isn’t like a traditional hotel and is rather like staying at a friend’s place in the city. Thus, you end up feeling like a local as you explore all ground zero of NYC hipsterdom. Despite being a budget hotel, it offers a 24-hour business center and a 1970s checker cab shuttle service to the subway. Furthermore, you’ll even find a fitness center with a dry sauna and steam showers for unwinding. The restaurant offers a delicious, albeit paid breakfast buffet – think pancakes, omelets, and French toast. It’s also open for other meals, while you can enjoy delicious drinks at the bar.
With natural oak hardwood floors, large windows, and bright hues, the suites and lofts here feel like homey apartments. The best bit is that all have kitchenettes with coffeemakers, cooktops, and all appliances and dishware so you can relax with home-like comforts.
Aloft New York Brooklyn
Lying in the commercial center of Downtown Brooklyn is Aloft, one of the most budget-friendly gay friendly hotels in Brooklyn. A younger, wallet-friendlier take on the W brand, this place welcomes you within a high-ceilinged industrial-chic lobby. The grey-hued palette is interspersed with splashes of retro pink and whimsical features such as an LED ticker that displays announcements, a free popcorn machine, and a pool table. A relaxed service is bettered by the thoughtful staff and a few but good facilities. The small but well-equipped gym and the huge indoor-outdoor pool area are the absolute highlights here.
Food is well-thought too, with the grab-and-go Re:fuel café offering 24/7 beverages and snacks, along with hot egg sandwiches and waffles for breakfast. Sheraton’s restaurant supplies Italian fare as part of the room service. The Kimoto Rooftop is a great place to kick back craft beers, cocktails, and Asian fare such as sushi. Rounding up the facilities is the walk-up W XYZ bar which dishes out specialty cocktails.
The grey rooms might feel boxy, but they have cloud-like king beds, Bliss beauty products in the bathrooms, and black-and-white photos of old Brooklyn. For better views, go for the west-facing rooms or ones on the higher floors.
EVEN Hotel Brooklyn
Health-conscious LGBTQ travelers looking for a cool wellness-focused hotel in Downtown Brooklyn will love the Even Hotel. With an eco-friendly design, natural food, and in-room exercise equipment, this hotel is a cinch for traveler show want to stay in shape while on holiday. From the rooms to the social spaces, this hotel takes pride in its wellness and health theme. The lobby’s open plan with seating vignettes on one side and games and books on the other is a great place to mingle with other travelers. The orange and turquoise color palette can only be described as “happy,” with clever quotes and phrases plastered across the walls.
Off the lobby sits the healthy restaurant with a bar with nutritious pasta, bowls, sandwiches, flatbreads, and salads on the menu. The breakfast line-up sounds delicious; we’d recommend the egg quinoa wrap or the cheese, sausage, and spinach frittata. If you’re looking for a grab-and-go meal, try the “Revolution” smoothie made from agave nectar, apple juice, almond milk, blueberries, and kale. Fitness freaks will love the well-equipped two-story athletic studio. What’s more, you’ll even find a group that runs to Brooklyn Bridge Park! Post-workout, unwind in the bricked courtyard alongside the bar or the seventh-floor terrace.
For those who love exercise regimens, rooms come with training guides, resistance bands, core exercise balls, and yoga mats. After that, you’ll definitely require the ultra-comfy beds and EO body products stocked in spa-like bathrooms. Spy impressive views of Manhattan and Brooklyn from the higher floors.
Topping the list of the best gay friendly hotels in Brooklyn is the innately British Hoxton Hotel. The hotel lies in the heart of Williamsburg just a couple of blocks from its cluster of gay bars. What also makes it so popular with the LGBTQ set is that it offers thoughtful service in a slick design setup, and that too at a price far below most NYC hotels. Sitting in a structure that was a Rosenwach water tower factory earlier, the hotel retains industrial-chic elements. For instance, its restaurant is built around a reconstruction of the factory’s old carriage house!
The sunken ground-floor lobby feels more like a living room than a lobby, complete with two fireplaces, floral armchairs, and vintage sofas. Grab one of the vintage-style free bikes to explore the neighborhood. After a long day, unwind at the rooftop restaurant and bar, which has floral barstools, pastel loungers, and sweeping Manhattan skyline views. The hotel also has a second-floor terrace bar that’s more of a social space with sun loungers, fairy lights, and ping pong tables. Finally, its restaurant serves, among other meals, an all-day menu with a full English breakfast – yum!
Rooms make clever use of space while featuring floor-to-ceiling windows with panoramic views across Brooklyn or the East River to Manhattan. Minimalistic bathrooms with slick fittings make your stay comfy. Thanks to the brand’s ‘no rip-offs’ policy, you’ll find a small fridge, coffee and tea, and kettles in the room. What’s more, you’re delivered a free light breakfast of a breakfast pot, banana, and juice in the morning too! The absolute best bit is the helpful little notebooks which offer a wealth of tips and information about the neighborhood, along with a 10-book library and a map.
Just So You Know:
- Brooklyn had a notable gay population and culture long before the Stonewall riots. It’s fascinating how accepted the queer community was in Brooklyn at that time. Today, Brooklyn is the hub for queer culture in NYC.
- The Brooklyn Liberation March that took place on June 14th, 2020 began at Grand Army Plaza and ended at Fort Greene. It focused on supporting Black transgender lives.
Get Some Culture in Brooklyn:
- NYC Guided Full-Day Bike Tour- Cross the Brooklyn Bridge: This is arguably one of the best tours to explore NYC, and it starts right at the Stonewall Inn in Greenwich Village, the birthplace of the gay rights movement. Ride along the Hudson onto the Financial District, across Brooklyn Bridge, on to Chinatown, and later ending in Little Italy.
- Brooklyn Liberation March: Helmed by the QTPOC grassroots collective Brooklyn Liberation, the first march took place in 2020 calling for justice for countless black trans victims of violence. This march saw a sea of people dressed in white calling for answers to the 100+ bills filed in more than 34 states targeting trans youth.
Best Gay Bars / Clubs in Brooklyn:
- Metropolitan: Things are always hopping at Metropolitan, which is one of Brooklyn’s original gay bars. During weekends, get ready to see boys wall-to-wall against the bar ready to cruise and dance all night long! From Memorial through Labor Days, Sundays see free afternoon beer barbeques in the back garden.
- 3 Dollar Bill: Brooklyn’s biggest LGBTQ+ bar and nightclub that’s tucked inside an old brewery. Equipped with a large dance floor, it hosts comedy, drag, and band shows, and much more events.
Best Gay Saunas in Brooklyn:
- East Side Club NYC: This is NYC’s premier social relaxation club and sauna for gay and bisexual men. Aside from a steam bath, you’ll also find private cabins for some good old-fashioned fun. Having been around for close to 50 years, this is Brooklyn’s, and NYC’s premier cruising site.