Gay Games
A man performs in the freestyle competition of the water ballet event on the pink Friday party of the Gay Games in the western German city of Cologne, Aug. 6, 2010. Getty Images

Hong Kong has been chosen to host the 2022 Gay Games after it successfully fought off bids from cities in the United States and Mexico, and will become the first Asian city to stage the largest LGBTQ sports and cultural event, the Federation of Gay Games announced Monday.

The Federation of Gay Games revealed Hong Kong as the winner at a press conference in Paris on Monday, choosing the city over Guadalajara in Mexico and Washington D.C. in the United States.

A spokesperson for the Hong Kong bid told the Hong Kong Free Press that hosting the 11th games would be "a major step for the LGBTQ Community in the region, estimated at 221 million people, and the wider community in fostering acceptance and inclusion."

Bid Chair Dennis Philipse congratulated Hong Kong for its win: "This is testament to Hong Kong’s spirit and passion for increased inclusion and diversity; bringing the Gay Games to Asia and Hong Kong as host proves the growth in openness in the city and across the region… This wouldn’t have been possible without the tremendous support from our team and partners, and of course the competing teams from Washington D.C. and Guadalajara for their strong bids, encouraging us to work harder to win it for Asia."

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The Gay Games was conceived by Tom Waddell, an Olympic decathlete, and has been held every four years, since the time it was first held in San Francisco in 1982. The Gay Games welcomes anyone to participate regardless of sexuality, gender and ability.

The mission statement on the Federation of Gay Games website, who sanctions the games, said that its mission "is to promote equality through the organization of the premiere international LGBT and gay-friendly sports and cultural event known as the Gay Games."

"The Gay Games is built upon the core principles of Participation, Inclusion, and Personal Best. Based on these values, since 1982, the Gay Games have brought together people from all over the world, with diversity, respect, equality, solidarity, and sharing. The Gay Games is open to all, young or old, athlete or artist, experienced or novice, gay or straight," its statement added.

The Federation of Gay Games also stated on its website that its fundamental principle while conducting games is to make sure "that all activities shall be inclusive in nature and that no individual shall be excluded from participating on the basis of sexual orientation, gender, race, religion, nationality, ethnic origin, political belief(s), athletic/artistic ability, physical challenge, age, or health status."

The event was held in Cleveland, Ohio, in 2014, which involved more than 10,000 people from at least 60 countries across 37 sports. The 2018 version of the games is scheduled to be held in Paris from Aug. 4-12, featuring 36 sports, involving up to 15,000 participants from 70 countries, 14 cultural events and an academic conference, Reuters reported.

After it was chosen as the host for the 2022 event, a post on the Hong Kong Gay Games Facebook page said: "We fought tirelessly and are elated to bring the games to Asia for the first time! Thank you all for your love and support. Bring the Gay Games to Hong Kong!"

According to the Hong Kong Free Press, more than 120 organizations supported the Hong Kong bid to become the host for the 2022 event. The economic impact for the city hosting the games has been estimated to be HK$1 billion (about $129 million in the U.S.), according to bid organizers.