Developers hoping to capitalise on New York’s popularity with gays and lesbians are to open the first gay boutique hotel in the city.

The Out NYC is billed as the city’s first “hetero-friendly” resort, a tongue-in-cheek reference to premises being described as “gay-friendly”.

The $20 million project will see an existing building in Hell’s Kitchen being redeveloped to make a property with 123 guest rooms, a gym, spa, restaurant and café.

The five-storey building will also include a nightclub with space for up to 750 patrons.

Local gay newspaper gay City News described it as “it the most ambitious commercial development ever to court New York’s gay community.”

The plans were announced by Parkview Developers, who must obtain a liquor licence and a cabaret licence to proceed.

New York is frequently named as a top gay and lesbian travel destination.

Tom Roth of Community Marketing told the New York Daily News. “Gays and lesbians travel much more often than their straight counterparts, and New York City is the number one destination for gay people in North America.”