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8 Cunard Quebec City Cruise Reviews

Embarkation - Sunday September 30th We flew to Quebec City airport on Sunday September 30th and took a taxi to the QM-2. Embarkation was quick and easy as only a portion of the passengers were embarking/disembarking at this port. ... Read More
Embarkation - Sunday September 30th We flew to Quebec City airport on Sunday September 30th and took a taxi to the QM-2. Embarkation was quick and easy as only a portion of the passengers were embarking/disembarking at this port. After we boarded, crew members guided us through the Grand Lobby to the elevators that took us to deck 10 and we found our cabin easily. As a testimony to the efficiency of baggage handling, one of our pieces of luggage arrived at the cabin shortly after we did! Cesar, our steward arrived to introduce himself and showed us where to find the light controls, thermostat, etc. He is an excellent steward, friendly, cheerful and efficient without being obtrusive, the epitome of Cunard’s White Star service. All passengers and crew attended a compulsory SOLAS drill at 16:30. This was a proper drill, because it was not a trip to the ship’s theatre to watch a video of what to do in an emergency, but you are required to take your lifejacket to your muster station and get instructions on how to proceed from there. Celebrity Cruises prefers to use the video-in-the-theatre approach, and we do not think this can be as effective as conducting a proper drill. We were pleased, but not surprised to see this done properly on the QM-2. Life Onboard This is our second trip on the QM-2, and our first after she underwent a refit in 2016. The ship is designed to be luxurious and the high standards are everywhere, from the elevators to the dining rooms. The Grand Lobby is 3 decks high and features large wall panels with Classical themes created in an Art Deco style. On every deck and stairway there are posters describing major events in Cunard history, and paintings of some famous Cunard liners. Space on deck 2 shows a display of the shipyards in Glasgow where many of the liners were built, and a commentary on the lives of the shipbuilders and apprentices. The sun was shining as we left Quebec, but the high winds made for an uncomfortable time on deck. This biting wind stayed with us all the way to Saguenay, and it dampened many people’s enthusiasm for outdoor activities. When the weather allowed we took every opportunity to explore the outside decks, including the bow area with the spare propeller blades (crew members refer to these as the Commodore’s Cufflinks) and the stern. There is plenty of open deck space on decks 12 and 13, but not many people wanted to play shuffleboard in the windy conditions. Fellow Passengers Lots of Canadians, some Americans and Germans, but mostly British people, many of whom had flown from the UK to Canada, so they could enjoy the Trans-Atlantic trip home. Food As you might expect, food was generally good and we have no complaints about the menus choices, quality or service in the Britannia dining room. Our table (336) crew did an excellent job of table service. Food in the King’s Court (KC) buffet is good, but the layout of this buffet is still not conducive to easy navigation nor fast throughput – it is now divided into forward and aft areas. You can also collect items from the Carinthia lounge (very tasty) and Chef’s Galley, but this requires a lot of walking as the food locations and seating are quite spread out. Breakfasts in the KC were disappointingly predictable. Waffles were not fresh-made here, nor in the Britannia dining room – toaster-waffles have a better flavour and consistency! The standard of baking needs to improve as does the range of breads on offer. Describing all breakfast baked goods under “Danish” isn’t really helpful; some more appropriate labels would be useful here. At lunch the curry station offered only 1 dish per day, and the beef curry we tried was so bland it should really be labelled beef stew. Other ships make a better job of buffets – Celebrity offer at least 4 different curries every day! However, the standard of patisserie is excellent. Decoration in newly refitted KC is dreadful. The interesting inlaid stone panel and the mosaics have gone, and have been replaced with some really awful daubs that are supposed to show different waterfront views of some of the world’s major ports. The only scene we could positively identify was the Pudong area of Shanghai (and then only because the ‘artist’ had included a rough version of the Pearl Orient Tower). The slapdash application of paint and the paint runs on the canvases made these pictures look amateurish; and compared to the exquisite detail and careful compositions of the ship portraits in the stairways, they really are cheap and nasty. Sorry Cunard, the ‘artist’ who created these pictures took you for a ride. The sameness of these images makes it difficult to navigate the KC and remember where you were sitting, because there are no distinguishable landmarks, and no clear indicators to show you Forward and Aft, or Port and Starboard. We were similarly disappointed with the replaced carpets in the hallways, elevator landings and the Grand Lobby. The design of the new hallways carpets gives us the impression of recent flooding, and we think the sunburst design used at the elevator landings and the Grand Lobby detracts from the elegance of the ship. Entertainment Most of the entertainment featured song and dance shows that were well presented, but a bit deja-vu. Specialist lectures were very good and the planetarium was excellent. Comedian John Joseph kept us amused on two evenings, but other than a violinist there were no speciality acts. Paul Garthwaite is a guitar expert and enthusiast who entertained us as part of the Amethyst duo in the Golden Lion pub. As well as singing plenty of great songs, he also gave us a history of the guitar and its influence on modern music from blues to rock and roll. His boundless enthusiasm and depth of knowledge really demands more than 30 minutes per session, because we could see that he has so much that he wants to say, but struggles to compress it into a half-hour. He is also the owner of a unique 22 string guitar. We think Paul should be given the opportunity to do a series of full hour lectures in the Planetarium. Channel 40 on the television shows a view over the bow from a camera on the bridge, and channel 43 shows more information about the ship’s position, weather, etc. Captain Wells’ midday Broadcasts-from-the-Bridge were very lively and informative, and delivered with typically droll British humour. If we have any criticisms we would have to say we wished he would talk for longer, or perhaps present one or two lectures on maritime topics during the voyage! Disembarkation Sunday October 7th Not nearly as good as boarding! Cunard uses colour-coded tags (for example, red) that you affix to your luggage before you place it outside your cabin door on the last evening. Members of the crew collect your bags and take them ashore for you to collect in a large, empty warehouse. You can easily locate your bags underneath the appropriate sign in the warehouse (for example, if Cunard issued you with red tags, you’ll find your bags under the RED sign). Very efficient. However, cramming passengers into the Royal Court Theatre and forcing them to wait until they are allowed to disembark really spoils an otherwise very enjoyable trip. Problems Time zone change announcements were not handled well: Cunard can and should do better. Many passengers missed some of the morning entertainments on Saturday 6th because the advice we were given in the daily newspaper was incorrect. Surely somebody who has a working knowledge of time zone changes could have proofed the paper before releasing it to passengers? There are no changing facilities in the Pavilion pool on deck 12, just showers and a toilet. You need to change in your cabin, and then wander about the halls in your dressing gown. We cannot understand why a pool area would not include changing rooms. A solution might be to close off the door leading to the shower area, add a bench and a curtain to separate this section from the washroom/ toilet area. Would we do it again? As seasoned sea-travellers we appreciated the luxury and stability of the QM-2. However, we think this ship cries out for the open ocean, and it was a waste to take her on a series of visits to minor ports. We think we’ll try one of the other Cunarders for our next voyage with Cunard. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
We traveled from Quebec City to New York (Brooklyn). The ship was in very good condition, with a very comfortable bed in our balcony room (deck 12). We were really disappointed that the Planetarium was not fully functional, only one show ... Read More
We traveled from Quebec City to New York (Brooklyn). The ship was in very good condition, with a very comfortable bed in our balcony room (deck 12). We were really disappointed that the Planetarium was not fully functional, only one show was available and that one had issues with sound. The ship did a really good job on Gluten Free food selections, much better than Princess or Celebrity. Note that there is NO signage on the ship to tell you what events are going on, and how to get around. You need to carry the daily newsletter with you all day. Best ship library I’ve ever seen. This is a great ship if you want to do formal ballroom dancing every night (think Dancing with the Stars level). Disco - not so much. There were only four of in us there at night. Both Embarkation and Disembarkation went very smoothly. Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
This was our 6th voyage aboard. First since the Re-Mastering in 2016 . The Service and general ambience continued very good as expected . Dining also was as good as it gets. Kings Court improvements were well received by most . ... Read More
This was our 6th voyage aboard. First since the Re-Mastering in 2016 . The Service and general ambience continued very good as expected . Dining also was as good as it gets. Kings Court improvements were well received by most . Caronia Lounge was also a big improvement over the old , very underutilized Winter Garden. I was suprized that the cabins added on deck 13 seemed hardly noticeable and loss of that rarely used wading pool and bar were not missed. Cabin TV's and Hot water pot were a nice improvement. Now a few big negatives as far as we are concerned. Reducing the Casino size to make room for more cabins , I feel was a mistake. The congestion at popular casino times , turned us off from using it. Transfering all that interior space that use to be the photo gallery , making it into a hardly visited permanent Art Gallery , is a shame. The Logo Store has been reduced to a small corner of a larger store . Tiny selection of Logo items , Logo clothing , etc. Godiva Candy shop seemed seldom used . Planetarium had only 2 different shows for this 7 night cruise and 1 was broken , so it was the same 1 show every sea day.(why not just substitute an older show ?) Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
50th anniversary. Wifi was expensive and a constant headache. Transfer to laguardia airport was mishandled. Not enuf buses, crowds of people waiting outside the ship for a bus, most of them quite elderly. No place to sit or get out of the ... Read More
50th anniversary. Wifi was expensive and a constant headache. Transfer to laguardia airport was mishandled. Not enuf buses, crowds of people waiting outside the ship for a bus, most of them quite elderly. No place to sit or get out of the elements. Thank goodness it did not rain. No excuse for Cunard not to know how many buses necessary for the transfer. This info is provided well in advance of the cruise. Just very, very mishandled! Shore excursions very pricey. Ship staff was generally pleasant and helpful. This cruise was the worst we have been on. We would not recommend this ship. Signage to gangways and other areas of this gigantic vessel was very poor. Getting from one place to another took more time than necessary because there were few directional signs. Self laundry was not available 24/7. Did not open until 7:30am and shut down at 9pm. Ugh! Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
The food in the main dining room at times seemed to be partially spoiled and the portions were small enough that it appears they are trying to "force" passengers to use the extra cost alternative dining. The selection in the ... Read More
The food in the main dining room at times seemed to be partially spoiled and the portions were small enough that it appears they are trying to "force" passengers to use the extra cost alternative dining. The selection in the buffet was very limited with a big emphasis on pork and lamb with very little beef ever. The employees in the buffet area were very discourteous they would step out in front as you were walking then suddenly stop to chat with a co-worker, totally unacceptable Cunard, are you listening... The cabin steward worked really hard and was a highlight of the cruise. The Cunard showroom troop was stale and with what the cruise cost you would think Cunard could have done better. The scones and clotted cream were already made with strawberry jam which didn't work very well if one didn't like strawberry jam or simply didn't want jam on their scone. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
My wife and I chose the Queen Mary 2 because it was making this itinerary at the time we wanted. We hadn't visited the delightful Quebec City before and we thought the 'Fall Colors' would be nice to see again. Both ... Read More
My wife and I chose the Queen Mary 2 because it was making this itinerary at the time we wanted. We hadn't visited the delightful Quebec City before and we thought the 'Fall Colors' would be nice to see again. Both 'platinum level' Cunard guests, we have travelled on the QM2 several times before and were anxious to witness the 'remastering' which the ship was given this summer. We noticed the new decor in the King's Court and the happier disposition of the crew there, but not much improvement in the food quality. As has already been noted, the food in the Britannia Restaurant still isn't as it should be and the wines still too expensive. The only 'extras' we used were the Canyon Ranch, two excellent treatments for my wife and a voyage-long membership of the Ranch for me, which was good value I thought. Stephen Cole's lectures were exceptional. The ship's library is first class, as ever and our brief visit to the Medical Centre confirmed first rate expertise there. We still feel that Cunard doesn't deserve a premium price over other lines, that the mandatory daily service charge per guest is unnecessary (although other lines all do it now too) and it it is outrageous to have to pay 15% extra for some purchases on board. However, bearing in mind that Cunard were managing over 2500 guests, they did a satisfactory job and the line has to be congratulated on very smooth embarkatiion and disembarkation. We did not like the NYC relocation from Manhattan to Brooklyn. The ship was in port for too short a time for us to travel to Manhattan for shopping and return. The taxi cost the best part of $100 - going 'the pretty way' which both drivers took us. (We have docked on the QM2 several times at Manhattan before, so this ship is certainly not too large for that terminal.). We thought that taking seven days to cross the Atlantic these days is too long. Was it necessary to encircle the Isle of Wight to approach Southampton Water from the South East, Kevin? Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
Amazing QM2 history! We had a queens grille suite and was quite impressed by the space and service the butler was a quick call away . The restaurant was amazing for the queens grille we could pretty much order anything we wanted as long ... Read More
Amazing QM2 history! We had a queens grille suite and was quite impressed by the space and service the butler was a quick call away . The restaurant was amazing for the queens grille we could pretty much order anything we wanted as long as we gave them notice at lunch! Had caviar and vodka Queen Mary style!! The FOD get togethers were fun and there was a nightclub behind the ballroom floor! The ports were all amazing and even if the queen mary excursions were full if you get off at the ports they have excursions you can buy there which are usually cheaper! We got on board at Quebec city a little later in the evening so it was a bit of a ghost town but the security guard called someone from the boat to get us on board. He thought we were crew since we were younger! LOL ! There are a lot of older people on the ship but everyone had an interesting life story! We wore tuxes for the formal nights and that was fun but wouldn't want to do that every night! The QM2 had bits of history everywhere and you had a new area to explore on the ship alomst everyday. Overall an amazing cruise on an amazing ship! Canada was beautiful in the fall! Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
This was my last voyage before the dry dock coming after the WC, so I hope to write a comparison next year - as we have booked the same class and the exact same trip - Quebec to NYC. I hope this review helps give a few tidbits and ... Read More
This was my last voyage before the dry dock coming after the WC, so I hope to write a comparison next year - as we have booked the same class and the exact same trip - Quebec to NYC. I hope this review helps give a few tidbits and happy thoughts - though there was a hiccup or two. Boarding: NYC & Southampton have it down to a science; Quebec City was complete chaos. Enough said. And as for arrival time - this is the one time it didn't seem to make one whit of difference what time you arrived. Just wander on board whenever. No Grills or Platinum/Diamond line. Cabin: 9037 - a Q5. Still a wonderful experience to sail Queen's Grill. Champagne and chocolates waiting, and a beautiful view of Quebec City. Book starboard on these New England & Canada cruises which stay in Quebec overnight (they do this again next year) so you have the view of the sunset next to the Chateau Frontenac. Cabin was clean and spacious but it is looking a bit dated - 11 years old so it is definitely time for the refit. Cabin: A- Public Spaces - Still wonderful - The Vueve Clicquot Bar, Chart Room, Golden Lion, Commodore Club - all had been freshened in the last mini refit and they look great. However, the hallway carpets on Deck 9 are stained and look quite bad. There are obviously plumbing issues. leaks, etc. taking place which I understand will be attended to during dry dock. There are definitely some interesting plumbing "smells" in a few areas of the ship. But it really is the only liner afloat taking the punishment which the North Atlantic deals out so it's to be expected I think. The Kings Court buffet is so chaotic and poorly laid out, I don't ever eat there. A few other areas need freshening and the artwork has some scratches, etc., which need restoration but as I mentioned, this is coming. Public Areas: B+ Dining - The QG is the best. The Maitre d' will come by every day to ask what you may want for dinner whether it is on the menu or not. One day I ordered a wild mushroom risotto with Porcini because it's not easy to make good risotto at home. We had tableside flambe desserts 3 nights. A "Taste of India" full Indian dinner one night. With enough advance notice your wish is their command in the Queen's Grill. One night we had a Beef Wellington for 2 which they then carved tableside, and it was heavenly. If you like a particular flavor of ice cream, ask for it the day before and the kitchen will make it for your dessert the next day. The service is also excellent. After a day or so they learn what you like (double espresso after dinner) and you don't have to ask after that - it just comes to you. I think we ordered a la carte almost every night. The QG staff was friendly, personable and fun. They also work hard - and do a great job. The other dining standout was afternoon tea in the Queen's Lounge - they warm the scones and make you any type of tea you like, as well as serve some nice savories and sweets. Very quiet & relaxing compared to Queen's Room tea, but you get no live music in the Grills lounge. The Golden lion still offers the pub lunch, and we still enjoy the fish and chips, cottage pie, etc. Very traditional. We also ate in Todd English once and it was as usual, amazing. Queen's Grill dining: A (not an A+ but only because the décor is getting dated) Ports: Quebec City - best port in Canada due to beautiful architecture and great restaurant choices; Sydney, NS (Cape Breton Island) - a small port but full of friendly people and natural beauties. One of the friendliest ports in fact, and certainly the most rugged. The Cabot trail and the lakes are amazing. They also have a few nice local breweries popping up and a distillery a half day's drive there and back. Even the tender was a nice, smooth ride. Ports: A Entertainment - I like Cunard's entertainment. The enrichment program is the best anywhere I believe. Bill Miller "Mr. Ocean Liner" had wonderful stories and pictures of the "Golden Age of travel"; A British diplomat who served the Queen and had been knighted gave some great talks about the Jubilee, and about the "Special Relationship" between Britain and England. RADA (Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts) give acting lessons and put on plays. The shows in the Royal Court Theater have the usual singing and dancing, but it is nice that they have a live orchestra at the shows. I will be honest and say the "guest entertainers" usually a classical guitarist, pianist or some such aren't to my taste so we skip them. Maybe I will like them when I am a bit older! But the small venue entertainment - Jazz in the Chart Room by a trio, a strings concert in the Chart Room before dinner, Dixieland Jazz band in the Winter Garden at lunch, and a pianist with a night cap in the Commodore Club martini bar - those are all wonderful and divine. Having the Queen's Room Orchestra with ballroom dancing every night is very special. We dance about 30 minutes every night but I see more and more strict ballroom dancers on board. Please, get over yourselves. Save the professional stuff for when it is empty in there or when you are at home. There are ballroom dance classes offered on board and many participate. There needs to be room for everyone (beginner to advanced) so perhaps Cunard should figure out a way to subtly emphasize that to the ballroom kings and queens. They also have the usual napkin folding & scarf tying classes, but I skipped these and paid my $30 for flower arranging which I discovered last year. This is a GREAT class and I highly recommend it. Afterwards, you bring two beautiful arrangements back to decorate your stateroom for the rest of the voyage. They also offer iPad, MS and other computer type classes which I don't need but appear to be very popular, and bridge lessons which I have also never participated in, but these also appear popular. They also have a large, beautiful library with an enormous selection. Entertainment: A- Intangibles: #1 - Sense of history. You walk around the ship and see pictures of the Carpathia rescuing Titanic survivors, the Lusitania before she was sunk, the Queen Mary carrying troops to fight the War, all Cunarders. You see all the stars who were on board the line over the last century and a half. #2 - Elegance. Fresh flowers everywhere throughout the ship. Formal nights where tuxes are the rule, and even informal nights are dressy. Cunard hopefully will continue to enforce the dress code which contributes to the elegance of the ship. The only "inelegant" part if the ship is really Kings Court buffet. #3 - Kennels. Where else but the QM2 can you see adorable doggies going for their afternoon walks? Intangibles: A+ Overall, Cunard still after 175 years, offers a wonderful , elegant, refined and top notch experience. The Grills restaurants are superb and the public rooms elegant and pleasant to spend time in. The "on-board life" is a rewarding experience, but not for everyone. If a flurry of activities, deck parties and in your face entertainment is your thing - you will NOT like Cunard. But if you want an elegant escape from the every day world, this is definitely for you. Don't be put off by the average age of Cunard travelers if you are younger; my husband and I are far under the normal demographic but find it o be charming and wonderful! And if you want to o to or from Europe with no jet lag...do a crossing! Overall: A Read Less
Sail Date October 2015
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