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First Italy Hotel Achieves LGBTQ+ Certification

, First Italy Hotel Achieves LGBTQ+ Certification, eTurboNews | eTN
image courtesy of CatsWithGlasses from Pixabay

The Grand Hotel Adriatico in Florence obtained certification for QueerVadis Diversity and Inclusion Protocol.


It is the first hotel in Italy to obtain a certificate of inclusion for the LGBTQ+ community validated by RINA (Registro Italiano Navale (Italian Naval Register).

Destination Florence AITGL member applauded this achievement saying, “Tourism has in its essence inclusiveness and totality understanding for diversity: follow the QueerVadis protocol it means committing even more, and more deeply, to a future of sharing and a transparent and concrete choice of welcome.”

Giovanna Ceccherini, Sales Manager of the Sonders and Beach Group who is at the head of the program, focused on the inclusion program of QueerVadis Diversity and Protocol which greets at the entrance of this first Italy hotel. This RINA certified program brings hospitality closer to cutting-edge European standards which are now essential.

The QueerVadis certified protocol is in fact a breathing world program aimed at promoting tourist hospitality in the LGBTQ+ community. The international traveler can, therefore, have the guarantee of an adequate welcome at the Grand Hotel Adriatico that is internationally recognizable.

To obtain this certification, the hotel followed the guidelines for hosting the LGBTQ+ traveler at its best. The certification path developed over 4 moments during the year, led the Grand Hotel Adriatico to emerge successful for their attention to DE&I topics.

QueerVadis starts with an analysis of context in terms of good practices already in place to move on to professional training on issues of diversity and inclusion with particular attention to LGBTQ+ travelers. Legislation, communication, marketing, and e-diversity management were the macro areas of development.

The Grand Hotel Adriatico has, therefore, engaged in the drafting of a manual of management dedicated to good practices for LGBTQ+ reception, which implies the burden of keeping the contents updated. The last stage of the certification with RINA verifies the adequacy and evidence contained in the management manual. The certification, released “debt-free” at the Grand Hotel Adriatico represents one strategic tool for commercial positioning, in particularly in western markets, which is very attentive to DE&I issues.

“LGBTQ+ tourism has exceeded 43 billion euros, and this year with the tourism boom, it will make even more important numbers, but it should also be noted that 50% of LGBTQ+ European travelers who choose a hotel are careful that it is deliberately LGBTQ+ friendly and has a label that certifies not only membership to a code of ethics but a real commitment to a hospitality program with the adoption of Diversity and Inclusion policies that Europe’s same footprint deems indispensable,” declared Alessio Virgili, CEO of Sonders and Beach.

The Grand Hotel Adriatico has stood out since the sixties as a welcoming hotel aimed at the uniqueness of people as a point of strength of its international offer. Since 2021, the hotel has decided to take a more structured path that led it to receive the QueerVadis label.

The tourist who wants to discover Florence will know that it will find staff at the Grand Hotel Adriatico prepared to point out the peculiarities of the various tours of the city, restaurants, and clubs.

“In our company we have always welcomed guests without ever making distinctions of ethnicity, religious belief, or sexual orientation.”

“We have always done it, but without dwelling on the value of a totally inclusive welcome, which is why we decided to invest to do something more. We are proud to have received this certification that goes far beyond defining itself as ‘gay friendly.’

“Thanks to an elegant but casual environment to the central location, to the private parking, the Wellness Center, the garden and restaurant, we can already count on the satisfaction of the LGBTQ+ clientele, and it certainly helps us to find ourselves just a few steps from the area of the city defined by important international guides as ‘the most cool of the world’ – San Frediano and the Oltrarno. The certification represents for us a further commitment to perfecting our hospitality towards travelers,” said Laura Innocenti, Commercial Director of the Arshotels Firenze Group, of which he belongs to the Grand Hotel Adriatico and Rivoli Boutique Hotel.

“We can say that Florence is an ‘ante inclusive destination litteram’ – already in 1853, in fact, Leopold II abolished the penalties against homosexuality. Today, as then, the values at the basis of our cities translate into an increasingly sustainable and inclusive tourism project. Like destination Florence, the division dedicated to the individual tourism of the Destination Florence Convention & Visitors Bureau and official partner of the Municipality of Florence, we are committed actively since 2017 in the careful selection of partners and tourism operators in the area that meet these criteria.”

“Florence is a member of AITGL, the National Organization for LGBTQ+ tourism which supports tourism businesses and institutions to create a culture based on economic sustainability and conscious hospitality,” said Carlotta Ferrari, Director of the Destination Florence Convention & Visitors Bureau.

About the author


Mario Masciullo - eTN Italy

Mario is a veteran in the travel industry.
His experience extends worldwide since 1960 when at the age of 21 he started exploring Japan, Hong Kong, and Thailand.
Mario has seen the World Tourism develop up to date and witnessed the
destruction of the root/testimony of the past of a good number of countries in favor of modernity/progress.
During the last 20 years Mario's travel experience has concentrated in South East Asia and of late included the Indian Sub Continent.

Part of Mario's work experience includes multi activities in the Civil Aviation
field concluded after organizing the kik off of for Malaysia Singapore Airlines in Italy as an Institutor and continued for 16 years in the role of Sales /Marketing Manager Italy for Singapore Airlines after the split of the two governments in October 1972.

Mario's official Journalist license is by the "National Order of Journalists Rome, Italy in 1977.

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