Nine inches of Snow - New York, January 2011, joined the Queen Victoria at the Manhattan Cruise Terminal, alongside us The new Queen Elizabeth. Embarkation was a fiasco, the agency handling it for Cunard had a total computer breakdown for about an hour! Our first time on the ship although we had done the Queen Mary 2 (just amazing) and the bless her 'QE2'.
Went to our lovely Princess Grill Suite on deck 8, wow, perfection! This was going to be our home for the next three weeks! Champagne on ice, strawberries dipped in chocolate and a welcome note from our room steward. Asked Cunard prior for a table for two, so went in to the Princess Grill and were shown to exactly the table we would have chosen ourselves. The trip took us from New York (with its very special amazing Cunard firework 'Three Queens' display that night) to Fort Lauderdale, Bonair, The Panama Canal, one stop in Porto Rico and three in Mexico, eventually washing up in Los Angeles.
The ship we found to be truly lovely, like a country club, as usual with Cunard every member of the ship could not do enough for us, the food was excellent (getting to much for us by the cruise end!}, what ever we asked for the answer was 'yes'. Small story...we wandered out of interest in to the lovely Britannia Restaurant to look at their menu (generally exactly the same as our in the Grill restaurants), the maitre'D asked if he could help us "No we said....except there's a course on the menu we have'nt had in the Princess Grill"..."Oh really" he answered.."well can I arrange to send one up to you this evening"...we declined!
The Panama Canal crossing was was what we call a true 'pinch yourself. moment, a wonderful day and everyone should do it. The Theatre is stunning (my wife sings Opera so we know a fine theatre when we see one), the boxes were always full, and a lovely touch if you wanted one for a special evening. The Commodore Club (piano player rather to loud for a late night} was where we washed up for a late night drink pre. heading back to our State Room.
A tear or two was shed as we headed for Los Angeles where we disembarked This was for us a trip of a lifetime. We went on board to enjoy every day of it, and Cunard and the Queen Victoria made it just that. We are saving our pennies for perhaps (and only perhaps) one year sometime in the future to do another small Cunard cruise..but that's for the future, and all fingers crossed!
Wishing happy cruising days to you all who will cruise in the future...Bernard and Elaine
ps We read on this site of so many moans about Cunard, their service, tipping, etc. We looked upon our Cunard trips as a privilege not to be squandered. We have worked very hard throughout our lives to enjoy such luxury in our senior years. Yes, we know that it's 'expensive', we know the tipping system before we get on board (same as most others), we know very occasionally the service may fail - but for us we are just grateful that we are still part of the very very few who could enjoy such special holidays, there are many thousands who will never be able to afford such luxury and service, so why spoil a trip like this by moaning about it, when really its not necessary....life is for living to the full... not finding usually petty things to moan about.