Queen Mary 2 (QM2) Cruise Review by OceanPatter: Lovely transatlantic cruise (eastbound) ... really
Overall Member Rating
Lovely transatlantic cruise (eastbound) ... really
Embarkation: New York (Manhattan)
This is one beautiful liner. My husband and I had a balcony room on the 11th floor, while our daughter had an interior room just across the hall. The balcony's view of the ocean was sublime (so naturally, our daughter spent most of the time in our room). As this was the first cruise for both of them, I really wanted the QM2 to make a great first impression. And it did.
To start off, embarkation was a breeze, and a bottle of champagne was waiting for us in both rooms - a great start to the voyage. I found the room's furnishings lovely, including the sumptuous bed linen. However, what was most impressive was the 'sound strip' (akin to a weather strip) installed in every door, which prevented the doors from slamming. What a thoughtful touch of Cunard! Due to other sound insulation, we hardly heard our neighbors. However, I found the air conditioner somewhat noisy, and noticed several occasions of vibration in the room (our daughter's interior room seemed more quiet).
Our More room on the 11th floor was located mid-ship, but closer to the bow. It gave us proximity to my favorite areas of the QM2 - the library on the 8th floor, the workout rooms and spa on the 7th floor, and the beautiful Commodore Room on the 9th floor. I spent two hours every day doing a bit of exercise on the elliptical, and then alternating between the two saunas, steam room, and pool, and then slipping into a lounge chair in the relaxation area overlooking the promenade deck and ocean. Simply divine. A week pass to the spa area was also great value.
While there were plenty of exercise machines, 3 out of the 5 elliptical machines were 'out of order' throughout the cruise, as well as a majority of the other machines. That was unfortunate.
While others have highlighted the Chart Room, I preferred the more intimate Commodore Room. In fact, the Commodore Room seemed like an oasis for those who booked suites on the 9th floor - which was the most lovely floor of all.
What seemed to fall short on this cruise was the food - we ate dinner in the Britannia Restaurant and on the plus side, we had a very experienced and considerate wait staff. However, we found the portions small and the quality only satisfactory, and were surprised by the lack of vegetables. (At the end of the seven days, I was craving fruits and veggies.) We ate lunch in the Kings Court, and were surprised by the lack of variety in the available foods. My most recent cruises have been on Princess - certainly not as elegant a cruise line as Cunard, although they are both owned by the same parent now - and while Princess (Sea Princess in particular) pales in comparison to the QM2, it had much better food. Go figure.
We had two 'code alphas' on the voyage (medical alert). The second one seemed to be quite serious, as an announcement came on, asking people of a particular blood type (and with the appropriate donor card) to go down to the Medical Center to donate blood. We were all at dinner, and several people around us, including my husband, responded to the call. Apparently, many people offered to donate blood, although I don't know what ultimately transpired.
While others have commented that it's better to have a starboard room on an eastward transatlantic trip, our port side room turned out to be just fine - we were the first to see land as the QM2 slipped into the English Channel; also, we had the better view of the meet-up of the three Cunard liners on the last day of the voyage (coinciding with the last day of the Queen's Jubilee), as all the action was on the port side.
I was sad to see the voyage end (as I fantasized about doing a world cruise). Disembarkation was also a breeze, as we chose the self-service option, which allowed us to be off the ship by 7:30. We arranged transportation through Smiths for Airports (www.smithsforairports.com), which got us into London by 9:45, and gave us a great start to the day.
All in all, a lovely trip on the QM2. Less
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