Lesbiangaybisexual and transgender (LGBT) rights in the United States have evolved in recent decades. However, LGBT Americans may still face some legal and many social challenges not experienced by non-LGBT residents, particularly in states with large conservative populations, such as in the Deep South; in rural areas; and in some Native American tribal nations.

U.S. federal law does not explicitly include protections against discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. In June 2020, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that sexual orientation and gender identity are included under “sex” as a prohibited ground of employment discrimination in the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

California is seen as one of the most liberal states in the U.S. in regard to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT) rights, which have received nationwide recognition since the 1970s. Same-sex sexual activity has been legal in the state since 1976.
Santa Cruz has a long history of being a  gay friendly town and in downtown we can find a few gay friendly bars as well as The Blue Lagoon or Jury Room are most famous gay bars in Santa Cruz, CA.
UC Santa Cruz is among the top colleges when it comes to supporting LGBTQ students, according to a recent ranking by Affordable Colleges Online. The ranking looks at academic rigor, affordability, and support for LGBTQ students.

 Top attractions to visit in Santa Cruz

Best Day Trips in Santa Cruz

Santa Cruz is a city on central California’s coast. Its long wharf, with eateries and shops, stretches into Monterey Bay. Nearby, the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk vintage rides include the 1911 Looff Carousel and the Giant Dipper roller coaster. Downtown, Pacific Avenue has vintage clothing stores, cafes and galleries. Along West Cliff Drive, Natural Bridges State Beach is known for its bridge-shaped rock formation.

See all Day Trips in Santa Cruz on GetYourGuide.

1. Hotel Paradox, Autograph Collection 4* – Gay Friendly Hotels Santa Cruz California

Hotel Paradox, Autograph Collection

Featuring an outdoor pool with cabanas available, Hotel Paradox, Autograph Collection offers fire-pits for guest use. A restaurant and bar is on site. The modern rooms feature free WiFi.

All rooms are soundproofed and bathrobes are provided for each guest. A seating area, an electronics charging station, a TV with cable channels, and a coffee machine are featured in each spacious room.

Solaire Restaurant and Bar is onsite and features local wine and beer. Guests can enjoy farm to table ingredients and a seasonal menu.

This hip hotel is a mile from the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk and 5 miles from Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park.

Contemporary rooms offer free Wi-Fi, iPod docks and flat-screen TVs, plus mini fridges, coffeemakers and desks. Suites add separate living spaces.

There’s a heated outdoor pool, a hot tub, and a sundeck with a fire pit. Poolside cabanas can be rented for a fee. There’s also an exercise room, a farm-to-table restaurant and a poolside bar.

If you’re looking for a clean hotel in Santa Cruz California, look no further than the hotel paradox. The rooms are hip and newly renovated, the food is always hot and on time.

Nice pool area outback, and close to the restaurants right downtown. Staff are very friendly and attentive to any of your needs or requests.

The pool area is excellent. Large hot tub and poolside cabanas.

The location is a 2-minute drive or a few minute walk from downtown Santa Cruz and Pacific Avenue shopping. If you like acai bowls, check out Samba Rocks right around the corner. Overall, great find in a hotel.

Lovely staff and great location. The room was neat and clean. The hotel lobby and bar were really sleek. The outdoor area was also cool-looking with a pin pon table and heaters. I liked it, and I will stay there again.

This hotel has such an interesting aesthetic – it has rustic touches but also with a modern design. I was really into the wood paneling behind the bed, I love the huge tree trunk that serves as the welcome counter, and there are other really cool touches all over the hotel.

The bed was comfortable.

The coffee service in the room was of good quality.

And the pool area… man did I love that!

They’ve decorated it to be very loungy and inviting. You can get food or drinks out by the pool – at night it’s lit up with twinkle lights.
Looking forward to staying here again.

Gay Friendly Hotels Santa Cruz California
Gay Friendly Hotels Santa Cruz California

How much does a room costs at Hotel Paradox, Autograph Collection ?

Prices start 250$/night for Guest Mini Room with One King or Queen Bed. The Guest King Room with Poolside View is 261$/room per night with breakfast included – if coming on a honeymoon this is the perfect choice for gay couples.

Offering a poolside view, this air-conditioned room features a cable TV, a work desk and guest robes.

Where to book online– Hotel Paradox, Autograph Collection –  Gay Friendly Santa Cruz – you can find the best hotels deals in Santa Cruz during  Santa Cruz Music Festival which is celebrated with much enthusiasm in Santa Cruz on Booking.com or Trip.com or Hotels.com and see more reviews on TripAdvisor.


2. Dream Inn Santa Cruz 4* – Lgbt Friendly Hotels in Santa Cruz

Dream Inn Santa Cruz

This beachfront hotel is located next to Santa Cruz’s famous boardwalk and steps from the city centre, making it an ideal destination for a weekend escape, corporate event, family holiday or romantic getaway.

The Dream Inn features a natural, laid back atmosphere inspired by the ocean. All guestrooms and suites offer private balconies or patios with spectacular views of Monterey Bay. Enjoy the memorable sunsets, watch the surfers and let the ocean waves lull you to sleep.

The hotel’s spacious deck features a pool and hot tub. With a great location and luxurious amenities, the Dream is a great choice for business or pleasure.

Set on Cowell Beach, this trendy hotel with a retro vibe is a 7-minute walk from dining on the Santa Cruz Wharf and 11 minutes’ walk from the thrill rides on the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk.

Bright, modern rooms featuring balconies or patios include flat-screen TVs, minifridges, free Wi-Fi and iPod docks, along with Keurig coffee makers. Most have ocean views. Suites add separate living rooms with sofa beds. Room service is available.

There’s a stylish seafood restaurant with ocean views, and a casual lounge with a bar.

I usually spend many hours on the pool deck and as I see him going about his duties I notice that he interacts positively with each guest and he treats everyone the same. He’s quick with a smile and always has a positive vibe. He goes above and beyond in his service wherever he can.

This guy has really got it going on. For you ladies and gay men, he’s also easy on the eyes, so come to the Dream Inn and be sure to spend some time on their nice newly-renovated pool deck, and say hi to Jeff while you’re there. He’ll be very glad to see you.

Perfect spot to relax, and, hear the ocean. Great food and staff at McNeill restaurant. (part of the Inn).

I highly recommend this spot for views of the wharf, pier, beach and The Boardwalk. I highly recommend this spot for a getaway from the bustle of the SJ Valley.

es this place is expensive – but it is because staying here is a full beachside experience! Every room has an ocean view with a patio!

The pool has direct beach access, a poolside bar, and great features like mimosa hour and a taco stand. Not to mention, the employees really do reinforce the quality experience that you pay for. Definitely worth the extra $$.

This hotel is a delightful gem on the Santa Cruz coast. Fabulous views, uniquely furnished rooms with a 60’s surfer feel to them, great staff and service. We stayed away from the pool, in the tower section and had a very quiet stay.

The hotel is ideally situated for a long walk along Cliff Dr with fantastic views of the bay and ocean or the wharf and boardwalk.

Santa Cruz Lgbt Hotels
Santa Cruz Lgbt Hotels

How much does a room costs at Dream Inn Santa Cruz ?

Prices start 269$/night for Ocean View Deluxe – King. The Ocean View Cloud – King is 358$/room per night with breakfast included – if coming on a honeymoon this is the perfect choice for gay couples.

This double room has a balcony, air conditioning and bathrobe.

Where to book online– Dream Inn Santa Cruz –  Santa Cruz Lgbt Hotels – you can find the best hotels deals in Santa Cruz during  Santa Cruz Music Festival which is celebrated with much enthusiasm in Santa Cruz on Booking.com or Trip.com or Hotelscombined.com and see more reviews on TripAdvisor.


3. Carousel Beach Inn 2* – Gay Friendly Hotels Santa Cruz CA

Carousel Beach Inn

Located 2 minutes’ walk away from the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, Carousel Beach Inn offers rooms equipped with a private balcony. It serves a daily continental breakfast.

A flat-screen TV with cable channels is featured in each room as well as a private patio, a microwave, a refrigerator, a hairdryer and an alarm clock. Free WiFi is available in every room. Select rooms offer a spa bath for two or views of the amusement park.

This contemporary hotel is 2 minutes’ walk from the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk and a 9-minute walk to Santa Cruz Wharf.

The colorful rooms are decorated with original artwork and feature wood floors, balconies, flat-screen TVs, mini fridges and free Wi-Fi. Some rooms add additional living areas and whirlpool tubs.

Perks include complimentary continental breakfast and parking (1 spot per room).

Carousel Beach Inn is located across the street from the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk and its historic Carousel. We compared it with a few other locations in the area and decided to choose it for location and value. We are happy we made the choice.

The room was very nice. Beds were comfortable, decor was appropriate for the location, sea horse pictures and the balcony was nice to sit on in the evening. Parking was easy inside the complex.

It doesn’t have the beach view but it is the closest hotel to the beach.

The Boardwalk rides are just 1 minute of walking. Nothing can beat this location. The view to the boardwalk roller coasters are fun for kids. The windows and doors are very good on sound proofing. No road noise. Great for family travels.

Great location and worth the price. No turndown service and don’t count on their breakfast to satiate your appetite. Walls are definitely thin but it wasn’t too hard to sleep. Beds were comfortable but definitely could be upgraded with a thicker blanket.

Would definitely recommend if you were traveling with family for the boardwalk.

Gay Friendly Hotels Santa Cruz California
Gay Friendly Hotels Santa Cruz California

How much does a room costs at Carousel Beach Inn ?

Prices start 132$/night for Queen Room with Two Queen Beds. The King Room is 169$/room per night with breakfast included – if coming on a honeymoon this is the perfect choice for gay couples.

Offering free WiFi, this room includes a flat-screen TV with cable channels, a microwave, a refrigerator, a hairdryer, and an alarm clock.

A private patio is also available. Room offers a partial ocean view and a view of the amusement park.

Where to book online–Carousel Beach Inn –  Gay Friendly Hotels Santa Cruz California – you can find the best hotels deals in Santa Cruz during  Santa Cruz Music Festival which is celebrated with much enthusiasm in Santa Cruz on Booking.com or Trip.com or Agoda.com and see more reviews on TripAdvisor.