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17 Cunard Brisbane Cruise Reviews

We chose this cruise to visit Vietnam and Hong Kong and finish with a stint in Singapore. this segment was 22 days. - we were medically disembarked on day 18. Please read on to the Cunard Cough Embarkation was so smooth and took just ... Read More
We chose this cruise to visit Vietnam and Hong Kong and finish with a stint in Singapore. this segment was 22 days. - we were medically disembarked on day 18. Please read on to the Cunard Cough Embarkation was so smooth and took just minutes. The Cabin 8114 was clean, comfortable and the steward wonderful. Dining in the Lido Buffet offered a wide variety of choices of excellent food. Unfortunately the furniture in the Lido needs a very good clean and the chairs were very grubby and the salt and pepper shakers were the main source of germs. The main restaurant was very disappointing. The offerings were average at best and the service was not up to the food and service standard that we experienced on the Queen Elizabeth a few years ago. Mock cream was offered with desserts. MOCK Cream!!!!! when you can get fresh whipped in the Lido buffet - that was not logical, fine dining Vs buffet and we got mock cream. Might sound picky, but the rest of the food followed suit. The entertainment nightly and offerings during the day were very good. Excursions were well managed, Tender ports took forever to get off, so get down early if you are doing a self-tour as these leave after the excursions. MEDICAL CENTRE - excellent service for all those who became sick, and those with the dreaded CUNARD COUGH. Yes, it has a name, This cough is a virus and was rampant on our cruise. It put too many passengers in sick bay and resulted with us getting pneumonia and having to leave the cruise early to get specialised hospitalisation and treatment. Many passengers didn't like getting treatment on the ship as their travel insurance was not top notch and they didn't want to pay, therefore they coughed and coughed and gave it to many others. The doctors and medical staff we give 1000%, we would not be here writing this without them. Yes our travel insurance paid up but we were very honest with them and took out extra and got their approval to cover pre-existing conditions. Would we go again - no, we felt the overall standard on this cruise was not what we enjoyed a few years ago, and on review we will not take the health risks. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
This was our first Cunard cruise, and we probably won't be back for many reasons, but I will detail the good and bad. Our sailing was Brisbane to Singapore, with ports Airlie Beach, Darwin, Bali, Singapore Embarkation in ... Read More
This was our first Cunard cruise, and we probably won't be back for many reasons, but I will detail the good and bad. Our sailing was Brisbane to Singapore, with ports Airlie Beach, Darwin, Bali, Singapore Embarkation in Brisbane was smooth and easy, the fishermans grain terminal isn't nice but I wasn't going on holidays for the terminal so wasn't impacted. My first impression was that Cunard was missing the 'WOW' that an atrium such as those on Princess offer. The 'Grand Lobby' didn't seem that grand. It was lunch time so we headed to the dining room, though the cruise was on a world voyage we were told we couldn't eat there. We asked for a menu to cater to my husbands dietary requirements and were promptly given one. Upstairs in King's Court, we were blown away... By how below average it was. Small, limited variety.. Sure, you could find something but there wasn't much. I expected something grand and was flat. We had an inside cabin on deck 10. It was smaller than other inside cabins we had, and every surface was covered with things, ice buckets, tea, coffee etc. No room to put our own things so we asked our stateroom steward to remove everything and he did so promptly. Now onto the voyage itself. Well, what a disappointment. Cyclone in Darwin, so we could not port, which also meant Bali immigration could not board and due to a public holiday it meant no Bali. So we sailed for 9 sea days straight. The weather cannot be faulted to Cunard but their reaction was deplorable. A bottle of wine in each cabin, we are not drinkers and asked to swap for soft drink but were told we could have bottled water instead. That and only that was offered. For the price paid on Cunard cruises, in this case up to $30,000 we expected better. Thankfully, we did not pay that, but $6000 is still a lot to pay for a 12 day cruise with 11 sea days. Could we have stopped in Cairns by tender, or possibly Malaysia, Perth somewhere else, I believe so. The mood on the boat drastically dropped after the news. The holiday was a dud and with so many people disembarking in Singapore, it was very obvious nobody was happy. Dining.. Oliver , head waiter in the Brittania dining room, Deck 1 was superb. We were designated late sitting but wanted early, so we went every night at 6.30pm and were randomly seated. We mostly ended up at the same table and Oliver always bought out the next days menu for my husband. If we missed dinner, he would slip it under our door. The food was ok, never outstanding and without the ports it became very dry, bland and basic by day 7. Duck La Ronge was bought out 1 night, the driest piece of duck I've ever seen and one orange segment, no sauce.. Not very nice. The worst experience was when I asked for a straw to accompany my glass of ice and soft drink. The waiter told me no because they were banned on the boat. I had to argue to get my straw, and the next night it happened again. Finally I told him sternly that since they put straws in cocktails and other beverages I was entitled to mine. I was paying $4.71 for a coca cola each night, USD, so converted to AUD even higher - if I wanted a straw I was getting one. Then the straws started appearing. One night however, I watched him chastise a sweet older lady who asked for a straw with her ginger ale. I had enough and reported him to the head waiter. When he came back with the straw he proceeded to abuse her telling her that she shouldn't have gone over his head. Enough said on that, but rest assured he got a piece of my mind. Desserts were average,nothing fancy. We did like the games corridors on deck 2, they had boardgames, puzzles etc that was great. The planetarium was good but they didn't show enough shows and I found that silly since we'd been subjected to so many sea days. Loved the relaxation therapy pool in the spa spent many many hours there and the price was on par for what we received. Did not enjoy the shows, a guy and girl with a yoyo and some juggling for passengers of that age and price point was terrible. One night I overheard a lady say the singers and dancers sounded like 100 cats were dying, I thought she was being complimentary. The theatre is beautiful so they could do better trying to fill it. Crossing the equator service was hilarious and fun and I would say 70% of the boat went to that event, it was great to watch. Shops were ok, but we didn't buy anything. The staff didn't seem to knowledgeable but they may hve been new. IF you are a smoker, there is limited areas available on deck 7/8 and it is aft on the boat, be warned it is a very tiny area - you will not be catered to very well. Is it value for money. Not at all, and if you are spending that money I really think you deserve better. Cunard really needs to pick their act up, because the ship itself is quite nice,it is let down by poor offerings, average service (Where was white star), basic food, terrible buffet, expensive prices. Would i do one again, probably not. And whilst I met many people on board, a good chunk of them said the same without any prompting from me! Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
Im a platinum member of cunard which means i have traveled a lot on all there ships mostly on QM2. the food in the britania resterant always arives less than worm although presentation is good,even though the ship has undergon a big ... Read More
Im a platinum member of cunard which means i have traveled a lot on all there ships mostly on QM2. the food in the britania resterant always arives less than worm although presentation is good,even though the ship has undergon a big re-fit it is still tied in parts its saving grace was getting rid of that terrible palm court. the shops are exspensive as products can be got ashore at a better price toiled papper is appoling and cheep staff seemed always to be stressed ,but always,well mostly are plesant . the big pluss are the new single staterooms although you cannot book the on the saver fair,disspite what cunard tell you,cunard were the very best at one time now they are only good to ok christmass is not recomended on cunard,not my opinion but having spoken to passangers who had don christmas told me it was only ok. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
We have always wanted to cruise on Cunard and we weren't disappointed. Queen Mary 2 was just as we expected. Great service, great food, plenty of space and a touch of class. We had 14 days on the ship and the dinner menu was ... Read More
We have always wanted to cruise on Cunard and we weren't disappointed. Queen Mary 2 was just as we expected. Great service, great food, plenty of space and a touch of class. We had 14 days on the ship and the dinner menu was different every night. Our table of 4 in the dining room all enjoyed our meals and the friendly Maitre De, Elvis, checked every night to make sure we were happy. We requested our favourite deserts that were not on the menu and he made sure that we got them the next night and any other night that we requested them. I don't normally like the buffets on cruises but Kings Court was one of the best. We quite often don't eat until 2.00 pm as we have late dinner and they were always replenishing the dishes with fresh food. Other ships we have been on you get the scraps at that time. The variety and the quality of food was excellent. Different stations for each type of food. We particularly like the Sushi station, which was always topped up with fresh sashimi, as it was quite popular. The deck chairs on the promenade deck were excellent for viewing the sights or just reading a book and catching the breezes. We only saw half of the shows as 10.30 pm is a bit late for us to go to a show. Would prefer if they put the shows on before dinner. The shows we did see were very good. Their broadway shows could have been better and we had seen some of the acts on other cruise lines but that happens when you cruise a lot. This was number 40 cruise for us but our first on Cunard. We will definitely cruise with them again. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
We only decided on this cruise due to the price. We were not looking for a cruise but this one "appeared" on our email and we could not ignore it. And we are sooo glad we didn't ignore it. Best holiday ever!! If we had ... Read More
We only decided on this cruise due to the price. We were not looking for a cruise but this one "appeared" on our email and we could not ignore it. And we are sooo glad we didn't ignore it. Best holiday ever!! If we had stayed at home and ate at a Michelin rated restaurant every night, we would have spent more than the fare for the cruise- and missed out on the other meals, ports of call, entertainment etc etc. Gotta experience it to appreciate it.... what can I tell ya? Apart from the fact that this liner is a mechanical marvel and physically huge in size, it has everything you could want on a holiday. The formality of dress after 6pm may not suit everyone but, there are plenty of cruise ships available for the more casually inclined. QM2 is the only liner in the world and should be appreciated as such. I have read negative reviews of the ship and encountered people during the cruise that had a whinge. Seriously... you will find people everywhere who will complain that the sunrise isn't to their liking, or their Verve Cliquot is half a degree below optimum temperature and you need to ignore them lest you become infected with their misery and snobbery. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
Queen Elizabeth. San Francisco to Auckland February 4th-21st, 2017 Specifications Launched: 2010 Refurbished: Minor refit 2014 GRT: 90,000 Length: 964 ft. Draft: 26 ft. Speed: 24 Knots Passengers: 1990 Berlitz ... Read More
Queen Elizabeth. San Francisco to Auckland February 4th-21st, 2017 Specifications Launched: 2010 Refurbished: Minor refit 2014 GRT: 90,000 Length: 964 ft. Draft: 26 ft. Speed: 24 Knots Passengers: 1990 Berlitz Cruising and Cruise ship Guide 2015, rates Queen Elizabeth in top 10 medium large cruise ships Hi. I am a regular cruiser, principally on Princess and Celebrity Lines, but on this occasion re- tried Cunard, following our 2015 cruise on Queen Victoria. This time it was the Queen Elizabeth on a Pacific Ocean journey 17 nights from San Francisco to Auckland, with lots of sea days We are very experienced cruisers, so with this knowledge, my comments are only to add value, and be fair in my critique. Everyone’s values and bias is different, we are lazy cruisers, enjoy a bit of style, relative loners in approach, and don’t enjoy big groups of diners, while many onboard do. We flew Air NZ Auckland to San Francisco, staying at the pleasant Hotel Cova, Ellis Street, with a delightful on the hour free shuttle service to key destinations e.g. Union Square, Fisherman’s Wharf and a boutique breakfast included in the price. This hotel was excellent value, recommended for all, especially families, and those looking for a value hotel, not 5 stars. We are “short dosage cruisers”, primarily go for the ship and enjoy sea days. Yes we enjoy the Ports and have the odd bus tour but on this trip shopped at Hawaii and walked Apia, a delightful Port. Lahaina in the Hawaiian Islands was a tender Port, loved the ride and this time by catching an early return, missed the more bouncy ride some returning passengers experienced later that day on returning to the ship. Our day at Tonga was aborted due to wind shear, the boat got to within 100 meters of the wharf, but conditions not safe, and so this was one port experience we all missed. Credit to Cunard, when we got to Auckland 10 hours early, an overnight stop was provided, so for most passengers a day and a half in our lovely city, one of the great Ports of the world with its wonderful downtown location. Along with Sydney, not too many better berthing locations than Auckland, though San Francisco also right up there. SUMMARY Queen Elizabeth is an elegant ship, with its guest lecturers and entertainment excellent. The formal approach adopted re dress standards after 6pm every evening is not really us, but it appears to have assisted maintaining elegance and standards. The Britannia dining room was elegant with superb service. The entertainment and guest lecturers were really good. Piano or String quartets, along with formal dance lessons were all done with a touch of class, the Queens room a heavenly experience for those who love ballroom dancing. I watched. The ship was nearly full, but queues were never an issue; the ship appeared to have so much space, the library and many lounges all conducive to relaxed elegance, dining facilities and options always available with virtually no wait. One small issue, the air conditioning in the Main dining rooms, Royal Court Theatre was too hot. In a ship demanding of suit and jacket after 6pm, at times it was sweltering. If air conditioning is cool, you can easily put something on to feel warmer, but not the reverse. JOINING THE QUEEN ELIZABETH We took a taxi from our Hotel ($17)to the docks. As this was just another sector of a world cruise that began for many in Southampton, not a huge crowd waiting to get on. 30 minutes and we were in our state room. One enters the ship straight into the Grand Lobby. This is a lovely central area, extending over 3 decks, and reminiscent of a film set of the impressive staircases of the old Ocean Liners. Our room was on Floor 5, Cabin 6191, and this time with a balcony. The Décor for the Queen Elizabeth is not my taste but lots of mahogany, as expected traditional, great ship paintings, a bronze bust of Queen Elizabeth, large photograph of the Queen and for most aboard right up there in ship interior expectation. Queen Elizabeth is simple to find ones way around, she has just three sets of lifts and stairs, labelled A, B and C. The rooms are numbered as if in a traditional hotel, with cabins on Decks 1, 4,5,6,7, and 8. Deck A, with the medical Centre, is below Deck 1, and then the decks continue upwards until the highest cabins on Deck 8 and the public areas on Decks 1, 2, 3, 9, 10 and 11. Main Dining room Floor 2/3, Buffet Level 9, and Gym also. Grill class on the 11th and 12 floors is private to those on that level, but apart from the dining, they join the rest of the ship passengers for most activities Our Cabin 6191 Stateroom #: 6191 was a BD Balcony stateroom near to the stern? It was nice, roomy, and having chilled Champagne sitting there on our arrival was a nice touch. A settee is included; a great addition to the normal 156 sq. feet of a standard interior cabin with twin beds converted to a king size, two bedside drawers, desk and chair plus a small table. There is a nice fridge, a safe and we fund ample wardroom space and place to put our luggage. A Large Flat screen TV. Not that impressed with either the range or current release movies on this ship, Cunard needs to look at its offerings and upgrade TV entertainment package. Offerings were mainly dated and repetitive content. The bathroom was small but functional and the shower pressure excellent. We found the quality of air conditioning also good, but you could not turn it off, only adjust temperature. Normally we find the air conditioning in stateroom is marginal, but not on the Queen Elizabeth. Nelson our Steward was excellent, nothing too much trouble. SHIP MOTION. This was a Pacific Ocean voyage, and the first 5 days was constant movement, twists and lumpy seas. Not impossible, but difficult for those not prepared for motion sickness. The Hawaiian Islands, smooth seas and the seas flattened for our remaining journey. This part of the world including Aussie/NZ is prone to light gales and lumpy seas. My advice is preparation, and don’t take the big ocean voyage if you are very sensitive. RESTAURANTS BRITANNIA RESTAURANT: We were allocated Table 389, a table for 2 on the Floor 2 level, the second only time in over 20 cruises that our pre cruise request was accepted, and we did not have to hassle the Maître a de, re table allocation. We prefer dining alone in the evening, and those tables for 2 are hard to obtain. I understand Cunard adopts the practice of allocating table requests based on booking date, and that seems fair. Many of course like sharing a table with 4/6/10 persons, but we prefer evening dining on our own. The main Dining Room, the Britannia Restaurant, seating 878 guests is one of the most remarkable rooms at sea, spanning two desks at the stern on Decks 2 and 3 at Stairway C. It evokes memories of classic ocean liner restaurants with sweeping staircases and art deco pillars and arches. The restaurant's Art Deco design is captured in its original artwork, wall scenes, and a combination of authentic finishes including polished wood, bronze, mirror and gold leaf. The service was impeccable and the quality of food excellent. I drank 3 bottles of wine on this trip for dinner, good service with excellent wine list. VERANDAH FRENCH RESTAURANT: This alternative Restaurant has a French flair, and looked enticing. Surcharge was $20pp at lunch and $25 pp at night. We did not utilize on this trip, but comments from other passengers were favorable, and it looked exquisite. THE LIDO is an airy self-service buffet restaurant which extends between Staircases B and C across Deck 9. It is open 24 hours, serving breakfast from 0400, followed by lunch from 1130, then afternoon snacks, dinner from 1800 until 2300 and finally evening snacks until breakfast begins. At breakfast there is the usual cereals, fruit including an endless supply of grapes and fresh pineapple, cold meats and cheese and traditional cooked breakfast with omelet’s cooked to order. The Lunch Buffet was solid, and at night the buffet always provided the option of having a fish or meat steak cooked to your liking, along with many other selections. Overall the Lido is very good and we often choose to eat lunch there; the variety is good and being self-service it is quick on the days in port. It was always possible to find a seat. At night the buffet also offered for $17.50 surcharge an alternative theme based buffet. Surcharge too high in my view for the offering,($10 perhaps) and it appeared to be not well utilised THE GOLDEN LION PUB on Deck 2 also does food. It is styled as a typical British pub with classic pub grub: fish and chips, chicken korma, steak and ale pie etc. Also shows live sport. Meals only provided 12pm-2pm. thoroughly enjoyed the fish and chips. CAFÉ CARINTHIA To me very disappointing . Serving at a charge a range of teas and coffees only, with a very limited snack range. This needs to change and follow the Princess Cruise option of having a nice 24 café, with a selection of finger foods, cakes and light meals available . ROYAL COURT THEATRE, THE PRODUCTION SHOWS AND THE PRIVATE THEATRE BOXES ROYAL COURT THEATRE The theatre is where all the lectures, films and many of the demonstrations take place as well as the evening shows. It is very large, with capacity for over 800 people. The gallery and the two rows of private boxes on each side, 16 in all, give the impression of a nice traditional theatre on shore. Most of the private boxes are for two although there are some for four. Imposing. We sat free of charge in the boxes for matinee performances, made one feel grand. Cunard does this area very well. Top class entertainment, and excellent speakers on various topics. For example the speakers among others included Professor George Losey “Future of the Coral Reefs” Paul Stickler “The Paddington Place Murders”, he did an excellent series of crime lectures, and Ambassador Chase Untermeyer “The Muslim Hand, and not forgetting Clare Balding, talking of her Olympic and Royalty and Horse racing experiences. Entertainment wise Marcus Winter with his Sand and light painting show, Zac Winningham (Country) Clare Langham (Flutist), Ben Mills (Joe Cocker style) and the wonder NZ Tenor Ben Makisa all wowed the crowds. These are top class entertainers The Royal Court Theatre Company and Dancers (4 lead singers) and Dancers (8) were excellent. Cunard offers a very good standard in production shows. I went to everyone offered, both early and late a total of 8 shows. Great!!!! THE QUEEN'S ROOM Afternoon tea is served in the Queen's Room, and this is the typical Cunard White Star and white gloved service. Served between 3.30-4.30pm each day, High tea at its best. During the day the room is used for a variety of activities. On our cruise there were fencing classes, lunchtime concerts, dancing classes and Bingo. In the evening there is an orchestra for dancing, and it is lively and busy on the special themed evenings, with Balls and Ballroom Latin Dancing common. THE WINTER GARDEN, YACHT CLUB ETC The Winter Garden is between the Lido restaurant and the Deck 9 pool area and has a roof which can be opened in good weather and has a lot of very comfortable seats and tinted picture windows the whole length on both sides. This is an impressive area, a very interesting feature of the Queen Elizabeth. Up on the 10th is the Yacht Club and Corinthian room. Great spaces to relax and read! Disco at night POOLS/SPA There are two outdoor pools and the other is aft of the Lido restaurant, also on 9 Deck. Ample deck space for sunbathing and sitting, and table tennis, and other recreation facilities on upper deck. CLASSICAL CONCERTS AND RECITALS There are a number of locations round the Queen Elizabeth where you can hear classical music, and string quartette. Grab a book and listen to music is very relaxing. LIBRARY I always read a couple of books on a voyage. The library is a two story copy of a private library from Victorian days, with a spiral internal staircase. INTERNET AND WIFI Internet access is very good on the Queen Elizabeth, not always reliable in the areas of the world we reached on this trip. There are twenty computers available in the Internet Centre and there is also Wi-Fi available over most of the ship. Personally we go on vacation to get away from the routines of home, and avoid e-mail and phone communications unless an emergency but observation would suggest we are a dwindling minority. Package costs for internet use are available and reduce costs. GYM We are Gym users on a regular daily basis. The Queen Elizabeth Gym was reasonably equipped, functional and pleasant to use, but some equipment was starting to look weary. Again the issue of background music sometimes dominated the listening devices one brings to the Gym, when listening to the equipment TV’s or monitors. Why do Gyms have taped music, now that the ability to listen to music on your own device is so readily available? This is an area which most cruise lines have yet to come to terms with. Queen Elizabeth is a refined and quiet ship with solid standards, and yet the Gym music is poorly selected, controlled at the whim of staff, often too loud and not suited to the audience Gym is right at the front of the ship and there is a special magic in watching dolphins playing, the sun rising or a port approach as you are working on the cross trainer or treadmills before breakfast of fresh fruit in the Lido. LAUNDRY From the sublime to the essential. There are five self-service passenger laundry rooms, near cabins 4068, 5070, 6068, 7042 and 8060. Between them there are 14 standard Maytag machines and tumble driers, and each has one iron and ironing board. The laundries are open from 0730 to 2100. Laundries can be noisy, so it is best not to have a cabin opposite. Much to our surprise and pleasure use is free, and detergent powder is provided. ITINERARY • February 4th Board Queen Elizabeth at Pier 36 San Francisco • Hawaii Oahu( Good berth, shopping facilities within 500 meters, and transfer spot to Aloha Mall • Hawaii Lahaina (tender) • Apia (Lovely Port access) • Tonga (Good Port access to town , but we were unable to berth due to wind issues) • February 21 Auckland. A Great Port in the center of City. Lovely location Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
We enjoyed the 13-night, Brisbane to Kobe leg of Queen Elizabeth's 2017 world cruise. Embarkation at Brisbane's temporary international cruise terminal at Fisherman Island was smooth and we were quickly in our balcony cabin ... Read More
We enjoyed the 13-night, Brisbane to Kobe leg of Queen Elizabeth's 2017 world cruise. Embarkation at Brisbane's temporary international cruise terminal at Fisherman Island was smooth and we were quickly in our balcony cabin 6030. The cabin was quiet and comfortable although we initially found the air-conditioning to be cold and drafty even at the highest temperature setting, but after being adjusted by one of the ship's technicians it was fine. It's a beautiful, well-maintained ship. I particularly liked the Royal Court theatre, the Queens Room, the Golden Lion pub and the two-level library with its quirky spiral staircase. Almost all of the public areas of the ship are attractive, well laid-out and easy to navigate. I also liked the Pavilion Pool area and was able to swim laps in the pool late in the afternoon most days, at times when the pool was usually uncrowded. We had a table for two during the second (8:30 pm) dinner sitting in the lower level of the Britannia Restaurant. Although the portions were generally small the food was tasty, nicely presented and we had two fantastic waiters. However, we found the second sitting a bit too late and if we go with Cunard again we would try to get reservations for the first (6:00 pm) sitting or to upgrade to the Britannia Club, which has open seating from 6:30 pm. We had breakfast and lunch in the Lido Restaurant where the food was of reasonable quality although the service was, perhaps understandably, somewhat impersonal and definitely less friendly than the Britannia Restaurant. We particularly liked some of the guest performers in the theatre but were not so impressed with the Cunard in-house performances, where we found the singing in the Broadway and West End productions a bit repetitive and shrill. The theatre's resident band was, however, very impressive. The musicians in the ship's various lounges and nightspots were also very good. Being from Queensland we had visited Cairns several times before, so my wife elected to stay on board during the ship's first port of call, Yorkeys Knob. I made a quick return trip to shore, primarily to get some photos of the Queen Elizabeth at anchor, despite the inclement weather. The second port of call was a sunny, but very hot and steamy Alotou (Milne Bay), Papua New Guinea, where we both took the opportunity to have some cold drinks at the Alotou International Hotel located nearby, on the bay. The third port of call was Okinawa, Japan, where we just visited one of the main shopping streets on a fairly damp, overcast day. The final port on this sector was Kobe, Japan, where we dis-embarked and stayed at the Okura Hotel in a room having a great view of the harbour. From there we saw the Queen Elizabeth depart later that day. Overall, a great cruise on a beautiful ship with a friendly crew (and a very personable captain). Hopefully we'll get the opportunity to travel with Cunard again. Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
As two senior ladies we had always fancied the "Queens" experience so when attractive pricing was offered we took the opportunity. We arrived for embarkation at the suggested time( a good idea I feel) to find the crowd quite ... Read More
As two senior ladies we had always fancied the "Queens" experience so when attractive pricing was offered we took the opportunity. We arrived for embarkation at the suggested time( a good idea I feel) to find the crowd quite light . As we had received an upgrade we were whisked through and escorted to our penthouse 9076. Having read a negative review of this very suite and of the staff attitudes we did not know what to expect but were pleasantly surprised by what we found. It was spacious with fresh orchids in the dining area, roses on the coffee table and the chilled bottle of Verve next to some delicate sweet treats. It was minutes before we were greeted by our butler Noly and steward Bien of whom I cannot speak too highly. Indeed the friendly and helpful attitude of these two men contributed greatly to our enjoyment of the cruise.The same must be said of the staff in the Queen's dining room who attended our table. We found all staff only too willing to help- I cannot help wondering if you get what you give and if you treat staff pleasantly as human beings they will respond accordingly. We were delighted at Easter to return to the suite to find two large chocolate bunnies had somehow hopped into our dining room- a nice playful touch- others received eggs so I guess it was thought we didn't mind a bit of fun. The ship is on its way to refit so we expected some wear and tear and indeed some small things did need fixing but great attention was paid to rapid repair of these. For example when the TV died a brand new flat screen arrived when we were at a lecture and was fitted by the time of our return. The general appearance of the ship was not shabby either though I am sure if you spent time looking for faults you might find some. A pleasant surprise in the Queen's grill was the ability to order whatever you desired, just giving a little notice so that the kitchen could prepare. The set table idea did not seem to fit well with the anytime dining as it was possible to find that if you dined at 7 Pm others at your table for 6 may not arrive until 8PM so you dined alone for most of your meal. Maybe the set table went with the set dining times of old.One slight disappointment was the quality of the buffet offerings. A bit "shopping centre eatery " we thought though all had access to their dining room if they desired. We found the series of informative lectures very interesting though the theatre entertainment differed from other cruises we have taken in that there were many individual performers rather than stage shows. The library was excellent and DVDs were available from an extensive collection in the Deck 9 concierge as were coffee tea and selections of pastries and finger sandwiches. This area also had a travel desk allowing booking and questions about shore excursions to be handled on our deck. There were only three ports on this section and the trip into Borneo wildlife park was successful. The Shanghai excursion may have been a bit optimistic as to what could be achieved on a busy Saturday night in Shanghai. We were very happy to get back to the ship at around 11.30PM and to be greeted by staff with trays of chilled champers. All in all this was for us an excellent cruise enjoying the luxuries of the traditional shipboard experience- not a rock wall or a wave pool in sight!! Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
This was our 3rd time on QM2 as we enjoy the ship so much, we prefer the refined elegance and the ship itself more than the theme park gimmicks of other Lines, (I am a great fan of the tradition and romance of the great Lines of the past). ... Read More
This was our 3rd time on QM2 as we enjoy the ship so much, we prefer the refined elegance and the ship itself more than the theme park gimmicks of other Lines, (I am a great fan of the tradition and romance of the great Lines of the past). Embarking was a breeze, had to walk a few steps from the temporary tent to the gangway, a nice touch was the white gloved bell-hops posing for a photo before walking up the gangway. I knew the ship inside out and obviously researched our stateroom location well in advance hence finding our way was no problem, I dont know why some people moan about not being shown to their room, I mean are you 5 years old? It was first time in a sheltered balcony (previous time was in a glass front, deck 11) and we were very happy with it, I was aware of the issue being the height of the opening and thus it was not a disappointment. It was great to have access to the wind and sun and for the price we paid, it was a steal. Overall the service was its usual high quality, food superb, possibly the standard was better in kings court for some dishes (lamb cutlets!) , we used to get pre-dinner snacks from KC and take back to our room to go with wine or two. Then to Commodore club for a martini and then the fabulous dinner in Britannia. The weather was a little up and down and one odd thing I have not experienced previously was the kitchen exhaust fumes swirling back onto the pool area out the back, lasted a few days and must have been a following wind. Luckily it was ok for the King Neptune crossing the equator ceremony which the wife and I took part in, a lot of fun! During the force 8/9 gale, QM2 was a stable as ever which is one strong reason we like travelling on her, plus it is about the ship and I like to try to appreciate what it was like back in the 1930's hey day of great Liners. While she is showing some signs of tiredness, this is to be expected just before a major refit. Loved everything about her (apart from the fumes a few days), and despite 16 days on board we still did not do everything we wanted, I was certainly keen to go back to the high tea, it was so cool, but alas other eating/drinking seemed to always take priority! We only did 1 organised excursion, that being Shanghai which was reasonably good, now having been there once I would do it myself next time. At Kota Kinabalu we took a local ferry to an island in the marine park, all very good except for the terrible garbage in the water, pretty disgusting. At Cairns it was torrential tropical rain so we didn't get past the yacht club where the tender dropped us (Yorkey's Knob), we had visited it before and was nice to have another few hours there drinking and catch up with the club's manager again. We did a tour of the galley and loads of seminars and shows, all fantastic. Getting off in Hong Kong was perfect, we were up at 4am to watch the amazing arrival and after breakfast, walked off at 7am with our bags and no queues, straight into a taxi and off on our sightseeing tour. Already looking to get back on board next year! Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
My husband and I joined Queen Victoria in Brisbane and sailed through to Hong Kong in March 2016. We are Ballroom Dances so Cunard suits us really well. We love that you can get dressed up every night. Where else can you go to a ... Read More
My husband and I joined Queen Victoria in Brisbane and sailed through to Hong Kong in March 2016. We are Ballroom Dances so Cunard suits us really well. We love that you can get dressed up every night. Where else can you go to a silver service restaurant for dinner, straight after that have a short break of dancing in the Queens Room before heading off to the theatre for a live show and after that head back to the Queens Room to Ballroom Dance to a seven piece orchestra until midnight - every night of the week!!!! Ok sometimes when the vocalist was performing we felt that we could do a quickstep, cha cha and waltz all in the same bracket because he kept changing the tempo - but that gave us something to laugh about. The professional dance couple on board, Dan and Oleana were amazing to watch as well as being very good at giving dance classes each sea day. They were always very friendly and very lovely to speak to. There was always a great variety of food that was very well presented. Nothing was ever a problem for our table waiters. Our stateroom was clean and very comfortable. We hope that Cunard keeps with the traditional side of cruising, and never looses the prestige of the dress codes that they have in place. Also we finished our cruise on a high having won the Queen Victoria Dance Competition, so so much fun for all of those dances that want to cruise. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
After many cruises we decided to try a Cunard luxury cruise (from their advertising blurb) on Queen Vic. First impression Arrive up the gangway & be security checked. Find your own way to your cabin (you have been given a ships ... Read More
After many cruises we decided to try a Cunard luxury cruise (from their advertising blurb) on Queen Vic. First impression Arrive up the gangway & be security checked. Find your own way to your cabin (you have been given a ships map) Other ships at least have staff to direct you to your cabin, not Cunard 2nd impression 1st night in dining room. No breads on table, waiter serves you one bread roll & one portion of butter. Other ships have plates of ass. rolls on table & plenty of butter, you don't have to ask for a second roll. Hardly a luxury approach to dining. 3rd impression When ordering the main meal (entrée) I asked for a Caesar salad & told it was not available I could only have that which is on the menu. A little off-putting when Cunard tell you that you may have anything. It was available upstairs in the Lido bistro not in the dining room. At this time my idea of luxury travel has suffered a major set back. 3rd impression 1st morning breakfast in Lido, asked for grapefruit & told it was only available in the dining room, asked for smoked salmon, "sorry it is only available in dining room" So next day we ventured to the dining room for breakfast & had grapefruit & smoked salmon with an omelette which had been in a Bain maree for a considerable time, underdone toast & one portion of butter with cold coffee. So much for the luxury breakfast experience. Upstairs, hot coffee, stale bread rolls & yesterdays croissants but made to order omelettes, whoopee. The sad food experience goes on with a very poor selection in the bistro compared to Princess or Celebrity. Entertainment in my opinion was one step short of a disaster with English "comedians juggler, magician" & other guest entertainers of very ordinary talent performing 9 nights with the exception of the ship's singers & dancers; they were great but after 4 night in 18 they got a bit boring. You would see better shows at the local hall not on a 5 star luxury ship. Credit where credit is due; the ship was beautifully maintained, bar staff were top class, wait staff did a good but not spectacular job. Segregation of world cruisers & the hop on hop off crowd (1000 Aussies) was annoying; if Cunard want to segregate them & us they should go back to the 30'es & not run a hop on hop off boat The dress code didn't seem to be enforced very well as there were people around the ship in the evening not dressed according to the ship's rules. Many people ignored the hand sanitizers in the Lido & I'm surprised that there wasn't an outbreak of norovirus. On the health issue the ship was full of people with a cold or flu, we avoided the dreaded lurg by keeping clear of the cougher crowd & spray disinfecting our room every time we went in after a theatre or lounge visit. Another evergreen is the criticism of ship's tours & transfers, Cunard didn't let us down with their overpricing, e.g Hong Kong airport transfer US$35 (HK $ 280 pp) local taxi HK $ 230 for 2 pax incl luggage & a 34 minute ride door to door with no waiting for Cunard to fill the bus before departing. In Bali we hired a car with driver for the day cost was A$76 for 6 pax not A$ 75 per person on Cunard bus I wouldn't consider going on another hop on hop off cruise if it was free. The Cunard experience was not what I expected compared Princess, Celebrity or Holland America Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
We have been on many cruises from Australia, Hong Kong and New Zealand, and this one was by far the best. The ship is beautiful, and the service impeccable -- when I asked at the purser's desk for more recommendation cards, I was ... Read More
We have been on many cruises from Australia, Hong Kong and New Zealand, and this one was by far the best. The ship is beautiful, and the service impeccable -- when I asked at the purser's desk for more recommendation cards, I was told with a rueful grin that so many passengers wanted to commend the staff that they had run out of cards. The service in the midships bar and the Britannia restaurant were particularly to be recommended. Food in the Britannia was great, if not memorable. The sommelier was very attentive, and soon knew our favorite wine, which was a Cunard blend, so that the bottle was ready and waiting when we arrived. The alternative dining was not as good -- too much meat and too little garnish, and poorly presented, in both alternative restaurants -- but we were very happy with the main dining venue. And the buffet was wonderful for breakfast and lunch. Plenty of space so the tables were not crammed together. Read Less
Sail Date February 2016
Boarded Brisbane 24th Feb at Grain Terminal !st port of call Cairns Went ashore in large catamaran excellent transport compared to ships tenders 2nd port of call Rabaul We decided to do a shore tour What a disaster Cost ... Read More
Boarded Brisbane 24th Feb at Grain Terminal !st port of call Cairns Went ashore in large catamaran excellent transport compared to ships tenders 2nd port of call Rabaul We decided to do a shore tour What a disaster Cost US$119 each for a 4 hr ride to hell and back , decided to go and have some acupuncture to ships acupuncturist to relive some of the aches and pains ) Debbie Ai knows her stuff and her treatment helped tremendously (cost us$ 1500) for 5 treatments each Temperature 36 degrees C hi humidity .We boarded our minibus to find a very shabby interior no air conditioner working/shock absorbers at 20% working/dirty/non operating seat belts and multiple cracks thru windscreen. Our tour visited 3 places 1st War museum which consisted of a 1 acre of well mowed grass a couple of buildings and all these war machines almost totally rusted away and still deteriorating due to no overhead protection and a crocodile in a enclosed pond at back of display. Next ,visited war cemetry which is financed by the Australian Government which is very well maintained and worth seeing. (beautiful setting) At no stage did the tour operator commissioned by the ship (PAIVU TOURS) offer to stop for a drink or a pit stop for the ladies. We could have hired a local taxi and had airconditioned comfort at a fraction of the price the ship charged. Next stop Japanese tunnels (very interesting if you could see I had to turn my Iphone torch to see where i was going ) Poorly presented with only 3 x10 watt fluros distributed along the entire tunnel (80 metres) system driven by a petrol generator at the entrance and extension leads to the floors causing a trip hazard to the visitors . Roads are full of very large pot holes which do not seem to get much maintence making the trip a back ache/cramped leg nightmare As expected we did not go on anymore paid shore tours Next stop CEBU but this was cancelled during trip in favour of Puerto Princesa a beautiful town in an great location. Dis embarkation in Hong Kong was another nightmare which was totally cunards fault. They had a plan but- it totally got stuffed up .Luggage was collected the night before and arranged by deck number to be off loaded with the passengers from that deck. Guess what they unloaded half the luggage from deck 8 then released luggage from deck 7 then 6 while the people from deck 8 were still in the collection area looking for the other half of their luggage , In the meantime the people from lower deck 7 -6 were released into baggage collection pickup area (very small) were people could not move. It was so crushed that a person could have easily had a heart attack in this environment which was also very cold 12 degrees C and wet The average age of the passengers on the QE was 71 years old and very few children all of who were well behaved The off loading point at Ocean terminal was not appropriate for this size of vessel or the number of people getting off for tours and disembarkation. Another fiasco was the organization of emigration documentation (held on board) which was compounded by late arrival of officials and the route to and from the imigration officials set up by QE staff to get the people thru. Apart from the above I would highly recommend the Ship and the crew excluding the people responsible for the above fiascoes Read Less
Sail Date February 2016
This was a very short cruise to experience the excitement of life on the Queen Mary 2 - the great dame of the sea, the 5 star experience, I would like to point out we paid full price for our 2 days, in fact, more than what some passengers ... Read More
This was a very short cruise to experience the excitement of life on the Queen Mary 2 - the great dame of the sea, the 5 star experience, I would like to point out we paid full price for our 2 days, in fact, more than what some passengers on board paid for their nine days. Price is not something I ever bought up in discussion but some fellow passengers delighted in telling you about their bargains. Unfortunately I think Cunard has dropped its standards to accommodate the budget traveler. Pre cruise was a shambles, our cabin changed from middeck to aft without notification, our boarding tags were for Queen Elizabeth. Embarkation was quick and easy.Our balcony cabin was on the 8th level close to the library and was good although a little tired.The phone was not in working order and was not fixed during our stay. Service was excellent ,our cabin steward was excellent, room service was efficient and the restaurant staff were always cheerful and welcoming- so much so when they asked how our meals were we always said fine because there is nothing they could do to alter the quality. We went to shows both nights and they were both entertaining. Britannia Restaurant is a beautiful space, the food and wine service was very good and breakfast was more than adequate.Lunch and dinner unfortunately was exceptionally poor. I believe if I walked into the ship's kitchen it would be hard to find any fresh food- it appeared everything was cooked from the freezer. It was obvious the kitchen was working on a very tight budget as menus were all based on cheap ingredients.In fact at each meal time it was hard to find anything that was even appealing on the menu Food presentation was abysmal .Food was always warm ,never hot. Soups on offer were all very watery and had little flavour. The chowder was a milky liquid, void of any pieces of fish or seafood. Seabass presentation was appalling but at least tasted ok. Korma curry with vegetables and cashews, was a sloppy mess with no cashews and only a few very over stewed vegetables . Sirloin was cooked perfectly to order but was tasteless and chewy, fish batter was not crisp and chips cold- I won't go on as there is nothing good to say. It appears the standard on this ship has dropped enormously over the last few years. 2 star cruise at 5 star price. I was pleased we were only on board for a few days. Read Less
Sail Date March 2015
A couple of years ago we managed to book a 2 night cruise on Queen Elizabeth - we were so impressed that when the opportunity came up for a short trip on the Queen Mary 2 during her world cruise we jumped at it. We joined the ship in ... Read More
A couple of years ago we managed to book a 2 night cruise on Queen Elizabeth - we were so impressed that when the opportunity came up for a short trip on the Queen Mary 2 during her world cruise we jumped at it. We joined the ship in Brisbane where embarkation arrangements were fairly chaotic. Check in and issue of cruise cards was completed on board which made a pleasant office environment for the shore based check in staff. Once we had completed the formalities there was no one to welcome or direct us so we found our own way. We had expected a little better of Cunard. We were very pleased with our Princess Grills suite on deck 10 although initially surprised that the design of the ship had us looking down at the lifeboats rather than the water when on our balcony. Our first lesson in the differences found on an ocean liner rather than a cruise ship. Our cabin 10063 was well equipped and well located in the centre of the ship. The bathroom was roomy and there was heaps of closet space for a long cruise. A couple of days is not long to get a true feel for a ship but we certainly enjoyed our time on board. The ship is lovely - full of interesting memorabilia and a quiet classical atmosphere. Most of the staff were courteous rather than friendly and we didn't see any of the officers wandering the ship and talking to people as we often have on other cruises. We did like the bridge viewing area and the opportunity to see all the controls. We missed the outdoor areas that you usually find on cruise ships - the shaded sitting areas, the alfresco eating areas and the friendly bars but we could see how the layout would be ideal for transatlantic crossings. The promenade deck was spacious and well used. The Commodore's Club, the library and the Grills and Concierge lounges were some favourite places to spend time. The planetarium was a great experience and the guest lecturers were excellent. We enjoyed the shows we saw and the very talented musicians playing around the ship. We only met our stateroom attendant once - just after we boarded - but our room was kept clean and tidy and we were very comfortable. We really enjoyed our meals in the Princess Grills dining room - although it is less spectacular than the one on the QE it is a very pleasant venue. Food and service were good and I loved the Wedgewood crockery. A cup of tea tastes so much nicer in a Wedgewood cup! I was surprised to be told on the last evening that they could not do me a crepe suzette for dessert because I had not ordered it in advance. That struck me as rather odd but other than that we found the wait staff helpful and friendly. Our curiosity about the QM2 was satisfied and it would certainly be the ship I would choose for a transatlantic. Next year we would love to do a short trip on the Queen Victoria so that we have had the pleasure of sailing in all three ships of the line. I don't think Cunard will tempt us away from other cruise lines - their prices are high and they are seldom in Australian waters. But it was an experience not to be missed Read Less
Sail Date March 2015
We're first time cruisers and really looked forward to QM2, even after reading some of the more critical reviews here. That said our embarkation was relatively painless. No problems with photo's or credit card details, but a ... Read More
We're first time cruisers and really looked forward to QM2, even after reading some of the more critical reviews here. That said our embarkation was relatively painless. No problems with photo's or credit card details, but a number of other passengers who embarked in Brisbane did have those problems. Plenty to do onboard, the presentations that we attended between Brisbane and Hong Kong were superb and well delivered. Entertainment at night was less so, with shows only lasting 45 minutes being held at 8.30pm and 10.30pm. The formal night balls it was necessary to eat at Kings Court (Pigs in a Trough is the only description for this place) early so you could attend the ball that started at 9.45pm. Had to get to the Queens Room early (at least 30 minutes) in order to get a table/seat. Waiter service patchy with the balls, some waiters were really good, some seemed to hide in the shadows. Brittania Restaurant, the food was good. We got the 2nd sitting for Brisbane to Hong Kong and again between Hong Kong to Singapore, however our table mates made for excellent conversion. Our table mates were so good, we'd meet up in the Commodore Club for pre dinner drinks most nights. The service in Brittania was good be it breakfast, lunch or dinner however at times it felt very rushed and the menu's were nothing outstanding in terms of fine dining. The Commodore Club was an absolute gem, the diamond in the mud so to speak. It was a great spot to rest up during the day just reading a book or watching the world go by whilst sipping a coffee or something stronger if desired. The only complaint about the CC was the lack of dress standards after 6pm, jacket or jacket tie were required not shorts and t shirt as we saw on occasion. The staff did not pull up the passengers either. Cabin was an inside stateroom, that was quite adequate given we had it for 25 nights. Enough storage space provided (we had 4 large suitcases with us), the beds were okay, the air conditioning blows on your heads however and we both got head colds from this. The shower space in the ensuite could be slightly bigger which would make showering that little more pleasant, plus a good power point there would also help. We had no problems with the internal plumbing of our ensuite, but other passengers on our deck, deck 4 and 6 had to go without their toilets for a whole day due to plumbing issues (perhaps caused by passengers that do not understand English and therefore put things down the toilet that resulted in having the plumbing for half the ship out of action). Service by staff on the ship was very hit and miss. In Canyon Ranch Spa, it was UPSALE UPSALE by the staff. The photographery staff were pushy in getting photos of you taken in order to sell them at USD $30 a shot to you. Again in the photo gallery it was UP SELL UP SELL, the attitudes of the staff if you didn't take an UP SELL fell accordingly. Waiting staff in Brittania Restaurant were in general good. That said my partner asked 4 times for spinnach to be served with her eggs and 4 times she was told it was not available (it was when we spoke to a 5th waiter who was very surprised that she had not been able to get spinnach daily with her meal). The less that is said about Kings Court Restaurant the better. It was where the pigs came to eat and the shit began to fly. Menu wise was bland and the menu was repeated after 10 days. Waiter service was either pathetic or barely there with lots of junior waiters running around with absolutely no idea. Drinks service was pretty thin too. Fellow passengers, some were quite old and mobile others were clearly not so mobile. A number of passengers seemed to think it was okay to leave half empty coffee cups lying around all parts of the ship and on occasion we found half eaten meal plates left near the elevators by whomever had grabbed a meal from Kings Court. Some of the passengers clearly had "I'm King" attitude and lorded it over all the staff. Some of the staff had a "don't give a toss" attitude as well, which made us wonder just why they were on the ship in the first place. Some of the Ships Officers were not in my mind even Officer material, if they could find an excuse or disappear they would do so, they would certainly not be proactive. Our stateroom steward had to be asked repeatedly for soap, shampoo, slippers, fresh towels and oh yes to change the bed linen (done only twice in 25 days accordingly to my partner). The ships library is a highlight, very enjoyable with an excellent selection of books, the only drawback was the significant number of people talking to each other (libraries are supposed to be quiet but not here). The other plus was the library was just one deck directly below the Commodore Club, so you could easily grab a book/magazine and head for the Commodore Club for a read and drink. The ship itself is grand and in places stunning to look at. Its well maintained as it should be. Using the tenders to go ashore proved to be "interesting" at best and "woeful" at worst, whilst disembarkation in the 6 ports we visited (aside from Hong Kong) was at best "woeful". It could take a hour or longer to get off the ship (granted not always the fault of QM2), but when you are only in port for a day, losing an hour is not much fun. Ships tours in general were okay but do your homework before signing up. Not much point in doing a "active" tour if you have mobility issues and have to remain in the bus for most of the tour. In fact getting to the tour buses by our less active cruisers must have been difficult given the distances they had to cover in getting off QM2 and to the bus (again not QM2's fault). Overall, as first time cruisers we found the cruise "okay". That said we would not recommend QM2 or Cunard for cruising, as Carnival Cruises who now own Cunard have got their "cost cutters" into Cunard and its been reflected in all of the above comments. Its cut cut cut and if that means service gets cut or something is not available for a passenger too bad so be it, seems to be the current prevailing attitude of Cunard towards the paying passengers of QM2 today. Read Less
Sail Date March 2014
Queen Elizabeth didn't disappoint we were apprehensive about our cabin 1001 on deck one, but it was spacious and very clean with a big picture window. The bed was like sleeping on a cloud, with the best linen I have ever seen on a ... Read More
Queen Elizabeth didn't disappoint we were apprehensive about our cabin 1001 on deck one, but it was spacious and very clean with a big picture window. The bed was like sleeping on a cloud, with the best linen I have ever seen on a cruise ship. We dined in the Britannia restaurant breakfast lunch and dinner, I have worked in restaurants many years and I can only say the food was amazing, Not only that but we sat with many interesting people during these meals. people complain about the food but they eat on the buffet well a buffet is never going to give you the quality of the silver service restaurant. On a few occasions we managed high tea in the Queens Room, which is not to be missed if you can fit it in The staff are friendly and most importantly happy in their job. We talked to a waitress and said they are treated fairly and given time off which on other cruise lines this is not always so. The only criticism I have is the shows are aimed at an older crowd but Cunard should remember that just because they are old they are not dead. I love the classics and opera but why cant they throw in some 60s 70s and 80s nights in their shows I am in my mid 50s as were many others who said they would enjoy a bit more diversity in entertainment. Overall an amazing 13 days that I hope to repeat in the not to distant future. Read Less
Sail Date March 2014
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