After a flooded three days in Venice we boarded the Queen Victoria. I had high expectations but as we were cruise virgins we had no idea what to expect so it was all very exciting. Boarding was hassle free and we boarded within 30 mins of checking in, it was far easier than getting on a flight. On arrival at our cabin our clothing which we had left outside our hotel in Venice the previous night was all waiting. This included suit carriers and hand luggage and it was all present and correct. We immediately went exploring the ship and it was beautiful. It was clean, tidy and full of nice people, in 12 days I never heard any swearing which is so refreshing. The reference to the winter gardens and the fact that it becomes a bit like a nursing home in the afternoon is correct but it all depends what you want. We are only in our thirties but we have no children and have no desire to see someone else's kids running around and screaming so pick your ship. Lido dining is what it is. Its buffet dining which is not on the top of my list as I don't like having to serve myself but again pick the right time to go and its fine. Food is plentiful and its nice. We decided in the main to do formal dining both at breakfast and dinner as it suits us to be served. The food was in the main very good. The staff could not do enough for us, I often asked it I could have a different soup and as if by magic it appeared. A couple of times the food was not hot enough but we complained and it was rectified. I always felt the staff were very attentive, we were well looked after and never wanted for anything.
The entertainment we experienced was not of west end quality and some acts were a tad disappointing but we just went elsewhere as there is loads to do.
You need deep pockets on the QV as the drinks are very expensive and as we were on "holiday" it would be rude not to have a couple of drinks at lunchtime. Just a tip that when you board the ship go see reception and ask for your tips to be excluded as if you don't it is added daily and can be a very expensive add on. We were a gang of 8 and we left large tips but it was to people we selected and not who the ship decided.
All in all we loved it and have booked again. So watch out for the next installment.