Tallinn City Guide

Gay Tallinn Tallinn City Guide

Curation by Yasmina Rodríguez, words by Laura Tucker

Recognisable by conical red rooftops that rise up from between medieval builds and verdant splashes of green, Tallinn is a veritable nugget of beauty within the post-Soviet bloc, shaped as much by its fertile coastal location as it is by Russian imperialism. Take scenic strolls through Tallinn’s preserved Old Town, marvelling at centuries-spanning architectural styles while immersing yourself in the city’s unique café culture. From palatial promenades to sandy beaches, Estonia’s affordable capital seemingly has it all. Even the food comes without a hint of pretension, combining Scandi styles with traditional rustic staples of Baltic Sea seafood, dark rye bread and the humble potato. Despite the young generation championing LGBT progress and the Baltic Pride being held on rotation in the region (set again for Tallinn in 2020), Estonia still struggles to shrug off communist-era homophobia. At night, discretion is advised and open displays of affection are not recommended. However, if you can brush this off, a crazy night out in Tallinn is a certainty, whether within its hipster cocktail bars, bohemian cafés or all-night dance events. Read on for Mr Hudson’s definitive Tallinn gay city guide…

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The best hotels in Tallinn

Our Tallinn travel guide to the best hotels starts off with the Hotel St. Petersbourg, one of the longest-running hotels in the city, open since 1850 within a beautiful 14th century Old Town property. Close to so many of the best Tallinn points of interest, Hotel St. Petersbourg serves as a great jumping-off point full of both authentic historic character and chic décor. Be welcomed by a life-size Oscar Award outside before entering into the decadent main hall featuring modern design contrasted by original wooden interiors and walls lined with burlesque photography. Or how about the nearby Hotel Telegraaf, just a short amble away, providing discerning guests with all the five-star romance they could ever desire. Exuding charm with its historic wing and secret adjoining contemporary annex, Hotel Telegraaf maintains a cosy boutique feel while also being the only hotel in the Old Town to offer spa facilities. Blending both old and new, expect wooden floors, muted colours and replica antiques in rooms that feature French Balcony windows and rooftop views. Telegraaf’s on-site restaurant, Tchaikovsky is also worthy of an evening in, with its fine menu of French- and Russian-fusion cuisine.

Hotel St. Petersbourg

Hotel St. Petersbourg

CRU Hotel offers a convenient sanctuary for travellers who also want to enjoy period Estonian interiors of wooden beams and rich furnishings

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