This was our third Caribbean cruise on Queen Mary2 and we were very happy with this trip. We love cruising from NYC because we can drive to the port in about 3 ½. Hours. Traffic on the New Jersey Turnpike was horrible making us arrive at the ship just after 3:00pm. The lines were huge at check in, but the grill check in line was totally empty so we walked directly onto the ship. Finding food at that time in Kings Court was a challenge.
Our Q5 stateroom was wonderful except for the long walk to the Queens Grill. Our butler Lily was waiting for us wondering why we were so late. We did ask her to unpack us during dinner and she did a good job. More about Lily later. We had French Champaign upon arrival and had a second bottle in the fridge. Lily brought me a bottle of Beefeater Gin a pitcher of vermouth a martini glass a cocktail shaker and a steady supply of olives. Very nice.
Last two times we dined in the Princess Grill, and I have to say Queens Grill was a very pleasant surprise. The service was impeccable, food was great for the most part and selections diverse. The a la carte menu was three times bigger then the Princes Grill.
The last time we were on QM2 was '07 and most of the senior staff was sent to the new Queen Victoria leaving promoted waiters from Princess Cruise Line staffing the Princess Grill. The difference between our experience in the Princess Grill in '06 and '07 was like night and day. The '06 service was professional and wonderful. The service in '07 was typical cruise line service. The waiter would ask how the food was and if I said good he would not leave me alone until I said it was excellent. He was more concerned about our survey at the end of the cruise than making us comfortable. I thought maybe the same thing would happen this time because of the introduction of Queen Elizabeth, but the service was very professional and our table for two near the window afforded great views of passersby from the neck down and lovely conversations with adjacent tables.
We do not dance or go to shows (poked my head into a show about Italy and saw dancing Mona Lisas which confirmed my feelings about shipboard entertainment and walked out) we love dining walking around the ship looking in the shops finding quiet places to sit and read. QM2 enables us to do this very well.
We had two new ports for us on this cruise, Grenada and Dominica. Grenada was very nice we took the spice island tour which drove us to a volcanic lake and saw many beautiful views and a visit to a nutmeg drying facility. Because of the two hurricanes in the past few years almost all of the homes were heavily damaged, now most of the homes had been repaired with new roofs and new paint make for pretty villages along out tour. Dominica was a little scary if you wander beyond the gated-off part of the port, but the straw market was nice.
Lily Lily Lily, our butler. Great job but something was a little creepy. After coming back from diner in St. Thomas Lily said "I saw you went shopping I love the Gucci watch but I want to see what you bought at H Sterns the box was empty". The shopping bags from said purchases were stashed under the desk, so she really had to look for them. Then later in the cruise she told us she let her friends in to see my wife's purse which was on the top self in the closet. Then she came in one day and said to Judy "you don't look very well can I do something for you". Judy said no she had medication to help then Lily said "I know, you have a drawer full of medications." If she tells us she is a snoop does that make it okay? We asked people at the table next to us and they were appalled and said you must report her. We still don't know what to do about this. She never took anything but we don't want to be responsible for her losing her job.
Getting off the ship was a breeze. We were the first color called, found are luggage very easily, into our car and on the road by 8:30.
In conclusion we love QM2 and will cruise on her again, but we are sad that there are no NYC Caribbean cruses next year planned.