Charlotte, North Carolina, the huge and fast-growing metro near the South Carolina border is dubbed the Queen City. There are several new high rise office buildings with stunning modern architecture and new apartments everywhere you look in this fast-growing Southern city. And you are not that far from the Outer Bank beaches, as well as Asheville and the mountains. North Carolina has it all without the congestion and costliness of California or Florida. As well, there is an LGBTQ scene to be found scattered.about, however there is no officially designated gayborhood.


The Uptown (downtown) is very walkable. Enjoy the modern high rise architecture of the many new high rises which all coordinate their night time colors. The Bank of America building is my favorite. It’s by famed architect Phillip Johnson who also did many similar high rises in Houston.

All the museums are in Uptown and close to each other:

·       See the “My Presence is Present: Interpretations of afro surrealism from the American South” at the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African American Arts+Culture.

·       Enjoy the new exhibit, “The Art of Seating: 200 years of American Design” at the Mint Museum Uptown.

·       Take in the Levine Museum of the New South to learn about the problems with incarceration.

·       Also d’on’t miss the Beechler Museum of Modern Art and NASCAR Hall of Fame.

Enjoy the stunning architecture of the Uptown high rises which are color coordinated at night. My favorite is the Bank of America Building designed by Phillip Johnson. The new Duke Energy building is also a stunner. Charlotte rivals Houston in high rise architecture.


Argon is a video bar for a later crowd with stage and dancing, with a drag queen spinning the tunes. Next door you will find Sidelines, a sports bar with a lot of cuties who gather early to shoot pool or watch a game. Scorpio and Woodshed are also fun.


American Airlines, my new favorite (sorry Southwest), has a huge hub there with non-stops from across the world to CLT. The terminal is brand new. Don’t miss the new Queen of Charlotte statute. Try the Carolina BBQ for lunch or dinner. The brisket is to die for.


Take the #5 Sprinter bus to uptown (Charlotte speak for downtown) from the #4 waiting area outside the terminal to get to and from the airport to Uptown. Once in town, you can take the Blue Line Lynx light rail, Gold Line street car, or the new mini cabs to anywhere you want.

Take the Blue Line to the University of North Carolina at Charlotte Botanical Gardens which is just a short walk above the campus, where you can have lunch at the Student Union. Take the new Gold Line street car to the historic district. Stop by the White Rabbit LGBTQ shop at 920 Central Avenue in this unique neighborhood.


I stayed the City Center Marriott in Uptown. Close to all the attractions, its newly remodeled and they even service your room every day without begging. And no annoying resort fee. Next door is the new Monarch Food Hall with every type of food you would want. Or walk up the Harris Teeter grocery store (6hth/Pine) for a salad.


Tupelo Honey at 101 S. Tyron has great southern food. I had brunch there.

Monarch Food Court has twenty food place and is next to the Marriott City Center. You will find the Monarch Market at 101 N. Tryon Street. The outdoor bar is genuinely nice.

Church and Union at 127 N. Tryon has a great fried chicken with salad and a nice wine selection and great Old Fashioned.

Harris Teeter is your neighborhood market at 325 W. Sixth and has a great salad bar.


Charlotte Tourism. Q Notes is the LGBTQ publication that’s both online and in print. Queen City Nerve is the weekly with lots of current events. 

You are going to love the Queen City. I did!

About the Author

Bill Malcolm is the nation’s only LGBTQ+ syndicated value travel columnist. Residing in Indianapolis, he travels with a focus on the local and value orientation.