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21 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2017
We booked this cruise to celebrate a 40th birthday and our 20th wedding anniversary for myself, husband and our 3 year old son. We loved the refined, elegant, beautiful decor, the attentive and friendly crew and the food was excellent. ... Read More
We booked this cruise to celebrate a 40th birthday and our 20th wedding anniversary for myself, husband and our 3 year old son. We loved the refined, elegant, beautiful decor, the attentive and friendly crew and the food was excellent. I have to commend Cunard for their recruitment process because the crew were all wonderful. Our cabin steward, Maribeth, in Princess Grill Suites was fantastic and took great care of us. We were on deck 8 and were very happy with the size and location of our stateroom. We left our room by 8am every day and it was always serviced and immaculate within 30 minutes. We used the spa, gym and hair salon most days and everyone was very professional, courteous and friendly and we loved relaxing in the bath house. My hair always looked great thanks to Nicolene. The food in Princess Grill was delicious and the service was impeccable. I have allergies and was well catered for with a special menu and the food was always fresh, well plated and full of flavour. There was also a wonderful range of wines and John, our sommelier, always recommended the perfect accompaniment to our meal. All the crew in the Princes Grill (Raul, Julian, Sushant, Jeffrey) and Grill Lounge were first class. There wasn't much atmosphere in the Grill Lounge although it was fine for a quick pre dinner drink and the bar steward, Dipak was always pleasant and welcoming and remembered our names and favourite drinks. The onboard photographers were amazing and were excited to have a little kid on board. They were very patient with him and thanks to them, we have very special mementos of our cruise. I have been very ill and am due more surgery so it really means a lot to us to have such beautiful family photos and video together to remember our trip. For our first few days on board I took my son into the Play Zone and stayed with him so he could settle in, but he loved it so much, he was happy to stay there with the amazing staff. The kids club staff are all experienced, well trained and wonderful and took great care of the few kids who were on board. The kids club have a great daily programme, plenty of toys/books (which we can also borrow) and good indoor and outdoor play areas. There is not much for them to do outwith the kids club and we found some of the other passengers made it obvious they hated kids because he was made to feel very unwelcome in all the public areas. Kids do pay full fare so it is unfair they are expected to be confined to the kids club, which can be a huge challenge when it's closed, as there is nowhere else for them to go. We tried the games deck (croquet, lawn bells etc) but it's not really suitable for his age and the other passengers take this activities very seriously and competitively. Our son couldn't eat in Princess Grill because the woman at the next table constantly told him to shut up and would jump out of her chair, waving her arms and dramatically hitting the ceiling if he made the slightest sound. Her behaviour was borderline aggressive, which actually made him noisier, as she would upset and frighten him. After 2 days we stopped taking him there and the staff very kindly had his food delivered to our stateroom. Another woman next to us threw her plate down in disgust on our first night, shouting "I paid a lot of money and I expect better". Our child was far better behaved than some of those entitled, petulant passengers. I heard so much rudeness directed at the crew around the ship, which upset me and some of the passengers complained about everything little thing. It did spoil our holiday not being able to eat together as a family. My husband would eat breakfast and lunch in the grill alone while I took my son to Lido as it was easier to avoid confrontation with the rude passengers. Thankfully my husband and I could eat dinner together while the kid clubs ladies entertained our son (Play zone is closed during breakfast and lunch). We would watch from our dining room window as the kids club whizzed past us in the deck below racing in the Little Tikes Cars. The ship does cater more for elderly passengers and many of the daily activities didn't appeal to us. The average age on our cruise was 74 and they already had 7 deaths by natural causes in the previous 2 months. The library is exceptional with a great range of books which helps to pass the time. Some of the behind the scenes tours are for over 16's and the kids club is closed at those times so we missed out attending those. We dined at 6.30pm so we could have our son in bed by 8pm, so we always missed the formal balls and the evening entertainment (which we didn't mind as we expected this to happen) but it was good fun dressing up for the formal dinners. We loved the midship bar for a quick glass of bubbly after dinner. We enjoyed all the shore excursions although they were a little slow due to a lot of passengers with mobility issues. On the tender port days it took forever to get everyone on and off the ship using the tenders due to wheelchairs and walking aids. The onboard shops were good although I was surprised there weren't more toys available to purchase given the amount of grandparents on board wanting to buy souvenirs for their grandkids. We were fortunate to have wonderful neighbours on our deck who made us all feel very welcome and many of the passengers will become lifelong friends. However given the cranky and selfish attitudes we experienced with some of the Cunard cruisers, I doubt I will sail on Cunard in the foreseeable future. There were constant arguments in the guest laundry over washing machines and 4 passengers at the world voyage Cocktail party were thrown off for fighting at the buffet table. We were constantly told how lucky we should feel to be on board even though we have travelled regularly many times as a family around the globe. It does seem like Cunard hide the kids away in the kids deck which encourages the idea that this is an adults only cruise ship. There are regular activities for solo adult travellers around the ship, who also have separate dining areas, so perhaps this may be an idea to extend to families too considering our kids will be your future cruise passengers. Read Less
13 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2017
Massive fail from Cunard. I've been on more than 15 cruises. Loved everyone one of them, and am constantly amazed at whingers (but sadly the experience on Queen Elizabeth has made me a whinger this time).The service on ... Read More
Massive fail from Cunard. I've been on more than 15 cruises. Loved everyone one of them, and am constantly amazed at whingers (but sadly the experience on Queen Elizabeth has made me a whinger this time).The service on Australia's P&O is dramatically superior to Queen Elizabeth (and that says a lot as they are generally recognised as the entry level cruise company in Australia). We compared this ship to Basil's shambolic Fawlty Towers. In almost every instance the staff were clueless or just didn't care less. After swiping our cards to gain entry onto the ship, we were not even greeted. No welcome, no photo, no assistance to find our cabin. NOTHING! My wife is vegetarian. The meal options for her were appalling. More than half were indian themed which is not to my wife's liking. She had to pre-order her dinner the day before (that's OK), and she asked for a vegetable pasta or a vegetable paella. They came back and said "no, the chef will not do it". I ordered fish. It came with vegetables. I kindly asked for a side of chips. the waiter loudly sighed and said "Well.... i will write it down" and sighed again. At $600 a night i didn't expect this type of dismissive rudeness from the waiter. He was clearly annoyed that I requested an item not listed on the menu. Seriously , its just chips (which is surely on the kids menu). At afternoon tea, which is a version of a High Tea we waited 40 minutes to get our first item of food offered (most passengers are served within a few minutes). Some how the waiter kept running out of food just before he got to our table (and then forgot to come back), or was called by his boss, or responded to a customer request, or just chatted to a passenger and then got distracted. When there was 5 minutes left before High Tea closed we finally got offered some food (at this time 90% of passengers had finished and left). Watching the staff on this ship is akin to viewing a bunch of school students who have just started work experience in a field they have no knowledge, skill or training in. No friendly banter from dining waiters, very few smiles or any sign of interest from bar staff (To be completely accurate, the Yacht Club Bar attendant was very friendly, though I will mark him down for charging $40 of drinks ordered by the table next to me to my account - I discovered this when I reviewed my account when leaving ship). The Purser offered no apology when advised I had been overcharged. I was simple told she would report it. I asked if I could be contacted so i know its been sorted. She said "no we can't. Just check your credit card statement to see if we credit you". The casino staff were the only people that seemed to actually like working on the ship. they were wonderful and friendly. The staff seemed bored, disinterest, and unhappy working on the ship. No hot water on ship on 2nd day until after lunch (thats OK, things go wrong on ships) Rather than informing the passengers, they let each of us strip off and wait patiently with our hand in the water of the shower, wondering when the hot water would kick in. Then you wait patiently on the phone to report the shower issue and then you are told (without any apology or empathy) that due to maintenance there is no hot water on the ship. The actual ship - AMAZING. Loved it. the decor and style is brilliant. Opulent and luxurious. Sadly it ends there. My wife and I met some lovely people and still had an absolute ball, but the constant staff failings required a very positive attitude. We expected something special ............ Fail. Read Less
13 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2017
After raising my concerns on Face book and twitter I was informed that they were experiencing technical difficulties at check-in so could only apologise for the inconvenience. To be assured they are working to resolve this issue as quickly ... Read More
After raising my concerns on Face book and twitter I was informed that they were experiencing technical difficulties at check-in so could only apologise for the inconvenience. To be assured they are working to resolve this issue as quickly as possible however the port representatives should be able to provide further updates. We were sent into a reception centre with in adequate refreshments and space. After some 6 hours we arrived at our cabin. The theme continued on our 29 night cruise so. If you’re going on Cunard expect plenty of apologies and so sorry for any inconvenience. Patience you will need that too. I will go on another cruise with them Not. It took three days for them to finally get in touch. They clearly are not interesting in trying to resolve matters in favour of the customer. Just sweep them under the carpet which is very short sited and eventually they will go out of business, with such a narrow view. Dining was like a free for all on deck 7 little bit of a ruby scrum. The food was repetitive, cold at times. The Britannia restaurant was much better and the quality and service was pleasant. The ship had an atmosphere i would alike to a library at sea. Entertainment at night was ok up till 22.30Hrs then everyone would rush to bed. It’s the ideal floating care home maybe something to think about in later years but not at the moment. Wine was expensive like the drinks poor quality much better to buy off shore and take on board then you can buy quality. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2017
We have cruised 5 times on other lines but this was a "Bucket List" cruise for us. We felt we were very lucky to get any disability cabin, let alone in Princess Grill. Embarkation in Sydney was fairly smooth, and we were on board ... Read More
We have cruised 5 times on other lines but this was a "Bucket List" cruise for us. We felt we were very lucky to get any disability cabin, let alone in Princess Grill. Embarkation in Sydney was fairly smooth, and we were on board in about 30 minutes, with our luggage waiting for us at the suite. We have a small electric wheelchair which is the same size as a normal wheelchair, but entry through the door was so tight that we constantly hit door frame or wardrobes getting in or out. It required a difficult "S" turn to get in, due to free standing wardrobes, in front of the entry, which were mainly unsuitable for disabled persons, being nearly all shelves with only one small hanging rail in one robe unit (no walk-in robe, as pictured online). The accessible bathroom was OK, but access past there, to the rest of the suite, was not wide enough for the wheelchair to pass. Space between beds and lounge furniture, chair & table was too narrow to get to the second bed or balcony and the lack of space also meant that there was no access to lounge or chair seating without moving furniture. The TV was also on the wall behind the lounge, so not view-able, except from the beds. Power points were also badly placed. We had 3 at the writing desk, but none at the fridge & mini bar cabinet where the kettle and coffee machine were positioned. These had to be moved to the desk, to be used. Bedding however, was very comfortable. In all, this cabin, sold as an "accessible Princess Grill" was false, and when we checked a non-accessible suite, it was the same size and space as ours, but with a walk-in robe next to the bathroom and direct access down the passage into the cabin. We spoke to the Grills Concierge about lack of accessibility in cabin and also later, to an officer in the purser's office, but despite their promises to respond within the day, neither of them got back to us for the duration of the cruise. The other problem for wheelchair access was to the outside decks. All door frames we encountered, had no ramps, but more like a house wood door frame, with vertical edges. All were very jarring to cross and some were too high for the front wheels of the small electric chair to climb, so the chair had to be manually pulled backwards (with help from other passengers to hold doors), to get back inside. This difficulty, and possible chair damage, effectively prevented wheelchair use on the upper decks for us. Although the lifts were small, access within the ship was generally no problem, and while there always seems to be some people who show no regard for disabled, the majority of passengers and crew were considerate & helpful. The entertainment we saw was, in general "average" and not as good as on other lines we have previously cruised with. We were unable to take the tender to Port Arthur, but went ashore in Hobart, where special disabled access busses were provided to transfer to and from town. Meals in the King's Court buffet were mainly average and selections seemed to be minimal, compared to some other cruise lines. On a good note, the quality of meals and service in the Princess Grill dining room was superb. We were seated on a table of eight and our dining companions were great company. They were very friendly, well travelled and we always had interesting conversations which sometimes extended our dinners to around 10pm! Would we sail with Cunard again? No. Lack of accessibility in the Suite and Cunard's lack of response to the issues, made for a disappointing experience. Read Less
14 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2017
we chose this ship to celebrate our Diamond wedding anniv on the day of departure (I was actually born on the day QM was launched) and its juicy itinerary. .having cruised about 120 times all around the world the three places that had ... Read More
we chose this ship to celebrate our Diamond wedding anniv on the day of departure (I was actually born on the day QM was launched) and its juicy itinerary. .having cruised about 120 times all around the world the three places that had most appeal were first timers for us Okinawa, Taiwan & Brunei persuaded us to pay up 16 months before cruise commenced. imagine our horror when we received an email on Xmas Eve cancelling all 3 ports of call---yes 2 weeks before boarding at Southampton with no offer of cancellation. the overall cruise was immensely disappointing and yes we feel it was poor value for what we paid (and are still paying the remortgage) entertainment was banal,repetitive & frankly boring.-- hygiene standards were abused, food in the Britannia was just acceptable, in the King`s Court unacceptable ,duplicate bridge (which interested me) was disorganised,chaotic and a shambles. embarkation at Capetown was as usual an utter disgrace, wine prices,excursion charges and quality were unjustifiable, port agents recommended by Cunard for emergency were unavailable all the issues were brought to the attention of senior staff on board and despite promises nothing was ever heeded. care for the infirmed in ports of call was non sympathetic..communication with Cunard is an established horror story and they confirmed this status to Maril & myself. they just ignore you knowing their ship will always be full because it is the QM2. the Purser, Mr Henry Wasserman, took devious measures to avoid even talking to us although we were spending 100 nights on board and were top category Cunarders.. we requested at booking for Southampton to Dubai quote. Cunard insisted for their convenience to divide this into 3 separate cruises which was more expensive and far more inconvenient for us. even the Hotel Manager Mr D Shepherd admitted this was totally unnecessary as he agreed that ourtreatment on board was way below standard a great disappointment overall with many special moments. if we can help anybody call us at marilbrian@btinternet.com Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2017
About 2 years back I developed a desire to sail on the QM2. 50% of my friends who had been on the QM2 loved it and 50% hated it. Because of this I chose a short 7 day cruise from Sydney, Australia down to Tasmania and back to Brisbane, ... Read More
About 2 years back I developed a desire to sail on the QM2. 50% of my friends who had been on the QM2 loved it and 50% hated it. Because of this I chose a short 7 day cruise from Sydney, Australia down to Tasmania and back to Brisbane, Australia, in February 2017. If it was not good, then I could endure 7 days. It was, in fact, very enjoyable. So much so, that we have booked two more cruises on the QM2. November around the Caribbean and 43 days in January 2018 from Cape Town to Brisbane. Our embarkation in Sydney was so quick and flawless. We were in our cabin very quickly. Far more efficient than on any of the other 14 cruise ships that we have sailed on. We had a balcony cabin on Deck 11. It was spacious and well laid out. We could not fault anything here. When we set out to explore the ship we were astounded by the size of it. Although it carried 2,600 passengers, because of the size, most lounge/bar areas were not at all crowded. Many lounge areas would only have 10 to 15 people in them. The service from every crew member was outstanding. The dining experience in the Britannia Restaurant was equal to any other cruise ship we have been on and we could not fault the quality of the food. The evening entertainment was quite good although we have experienced better on 2 or 3 other cruise ships. On the down side, there were 3 things that could easily be improved. There was always a long queue at the concierge desk due to only half of the service stations being manned at any one time. On the last two days of our cruise we had almost no hot water in our shower and on the last day we had NO shower water at all. Probably due to being on Deck 11. The first time I ordered two glasses of red wine it cost me US20. About $28 Australian. Money is not a problem, but, being Australians, we have an abhorrence to being ripped off. Which this certainly is. We bought no more drinks. So Cunard missed out by being greedy. Read Less
28 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2017
Cunard was the only shipping line I considered. Reason being, that the choice was about the class and quality of the ship and its services, what a misguided perception. Sadly Cunard no longer represent either their own publicity nor their ... Read More
Cunard was the only shipping line I considered. Reason being, that the choice was about the class and quality of the ship and its services, what a misguided perception. Sadly Cunard no longer represent either their own publicity nor their past. Verve afternoon tea was a no show with no prior notice. Normal afternoon tea on Queens Room was a sad affair of bland slightly stale sandwiches, scones that could have been used as a weapon and some very ordinary cakes. On conclusion of the tea service we were immediately all asked to vacate for another function. There was no air of elegance, ceremony or tradition. We did not repeat this "must not be missed" event. We dined in the Britannia Club section, first day's menu was a disaster. I foolishly ordered 2 plates from the a la carte section, both seafood disasters. First was a seafood cocktail comprising of a dissected prawn and a scoop of what I can only describe as an apology for crab meat. If it was not tined it must have been frozen, no Australian crab could be that tasteless. The next plate sadly was pan seared scallops. Oh my. Even the waiter looked perplexed as he set it down, four I believe about the size of peas, cooked beyond redemption and having cast off any vestige of moisture. My travelling companion had ordered chicken parmagania this on the other hand looked like it had been prepared for a road digger. A giant schnitzel sat atop of pasta and some sort of sauce amongst other bits. Some of future offerings showed signs of improvement such as the chateaubriand which was good and also rib beef which was only let down by the fact that is was served rare instead of medium. We had booked in advance for the "special" dinner at the Veranda Restaurant. Oh dear what a circus. First of all three separate tables were under the impression that we had booked for a three course meal only to be told, no, it was a a seven course semi degustation meal. The first plate was the same sad crab story as before but this time with one small orange addition of a sea urchin segment. The highlight of this meal was the mushroom consumet. The lobster main was a confusion of tastes and could not seem to make up its mind what it was about. A very small and almost tasteless lobster tail was for no reason accompanied by a piece of red mullet sitting atop of octopus rings, textures of cauliflower were in fact tiny cauliflower flowerets dry and hard. All three tables were disappointed with the food. As far as I am aware red mullet is not a local fish so once again it would seem that Australian seafood was not used. Offerings in the Carinthia Lounge and Kings Court would as a whole seem to be more diverse and fresher, however on an elegant and refined shine would expect that table dining would be the focal point. As far as other aspects of the ship are concerned entertainment was few and far between unless you wanted to spend your day listening to lifestyle choices by Canyon Ranch. The Australian Ball seemed to have vanished without notice as well. Staff in bars and shops, with the exception of our cabin steward and dining room plus Chart Room , were surly and unhelpful. On the night of Cocktail Tasting a barrage of absolutely foul drunken ravings by a group of passengers,by content and word, was left completely unchecked by bar staff, circumstances that would not be tolerated even in a public bar. Embarking and disembarking was extremely efficient. The fit out of the ship truly lovely and considered. Maybe one has to be in the Queens Grill, maybe that has elements of what Cunard was and still unfortunately believes it has. Maybe this section was dismissed as being a fill in between more weighty voyages. Maybe they think Australians are easily pleased or maybe other passengers paid substantially less than $600 a day with the misguided presumption that they were sharing in a world of first class five star experience. Read Less
27 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2017
My husband and I chose this Cunard cruise as it afforded us the opportunity to try a voyage on a cruise liner which is world renowned. Embarkation and disembarkation went extremely smoothly. All staff polite and professional. We had ... Read More
My husband and I chose this Cunard cruise as it afforded us the opportunity to try a voyage on a cruise liner which is world renowned. Embarkation and disembarkation went extremely smoothly. All staff polite and professional. We had a Club Balcony Cabin (oops Stateroom), but reading the other reviews probably should have aimed higher to get the "true" Cunard experience. The cabin was clean and comfortable, albeit small. We were on Deck 12 and the shuddering and vibrations at night kept us awake. Even my husband, a notoriously heavy sleeper, was woken many times. Again, maybe we should have aimed higher (or lower and booked a cabin on deck 9)?? The ship itself is stunning - beautifully fitted out and attention to detail obvious. The dining staff on Deck 2 in Britannia Club Restaurant were lovely. Very professional and polite. The food however really was not of a standard I would have anticipated on a Cruise liner touted as exceptional. No michelin star (or hatted restaurant) food on this cruise. I would describe it as edible cafeteria food, BUT served beautifully on silver service by professional staff. (Although their coffee making skills left a lot to be desired - latte or macchiato - is there really difference). We expected the entertainment and activities to be sedate and yep they were. Although the Library is brilliant, no other entertainment or activity really left us looking for more. Let's put our age in the 55-65 age bracket - that's all I'll admit to. Not dead yet, but could have handled activity with a little more joie de vivre. Would we go again?? NO, thank you. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2017
The opportunity to travel on QM2 was too good to pass up and the 5 night itinerary afforded me the opportunity to travel in a Queens Grill suite. The itinerary was a round trip from Sydney, visiting Port Arthur and Hobart. Embarkation ... Read More
The opportunity to travel on QM2 was too good to pass up and the 5 night itinerary afforded me the opportunity to travel in a Queens Grill suite. The itinerary was a round trip from Sydney, visiting Port Arthur and Hobart. Embarkation was at Sydney's overseas passenger terminal at Circular Quay and went smoothly, but there was nothing special as far as Queens Grill privileges was concerned except to bypass the general queue, which is always nice of course. The staff here are always friendly and helpful and this embarkation was no exception. Stepping aboard the ship was very exciting but unlike Celebrity Suite class there was no one to greet you or direct you to your suite, or take you too a lovely club to wait for your cabin and enjoy a drink. There was however, a lift attendant to control the massive queue waiting to go up to their cabins. It turns out the lifts at stairwell B can best be described as Bijou, so I gave up and used the stairs. My Grill suite was 9002 at the front of the ship. On opening the door I was delighted. Very tasteful. Plenty big enough for me, with a large bathroom, whirlpool bathtub and lovely bar area. The balcony was generous with 2 wicker chairs, and the benefit of this cabin's location was that there was no lifeboat or tender blocking any view. You do however get a fair bit of noise when the tenders are launched. There was also a rattle noise from a mysterious spot noticeable at night, but it didn't disturb me too much. Bed and linen were lovely. Lovely bar set up. Champagne and Godiva chocolates a lovely touch. A note for less agile people the bathroom is shower over tub and the tub is deep. I dined in the Queens Grill. I was expecting great things of this and was somewhat disappointed. Same food as Britannia restaurant. A table right at the serving area nowhere near a window. I was expecting individualised treatment. Having said that, the waiters were delightful, most of the food was pleasant, and the company at the table lovely. The head waiter was almost invisible. Luminae on Celebrity is far superior. I also used Carinthia Lounge for lunch and found it to be very pleasant. Barely used Kings Court. I loved Sir Samuels, Veuve Cliquot bar and the Commodores Club. The drinks selection was classy and amazing, and hot chocolate to die for. Excellent coffee too. Service. If you want Joie de Vivre and chatty service this ship is not for you. Most of the service was very discreet, some of it was just plain surly. If this had been a longer trip I know some of the crew would have opened up more. My butler and attendant were lazy. I usually leave a generous tip, not this time. No interaction with them at all. Wine and food waiters in the Grills were gorgeous. I didn't bother with the Concierge lounge as the concierge was surly and it offered little in comparison with offerings on Celebrity and Royal Caribbean. I would not recommend Queens Grill if you are looking for added extras as they just aren't there. Pay as you go in the Grills Lounge. Much prefer Michael's Club on Celebrity. No tender priority either. The ship itself is gorgeous and beautifully maintained. A real pleasure to sail on her and her solidity is beyond question. The Cunard history is a treat to soak up.the library and bookshop are delights I found too late in the cruise. There is a well appointed gym. Classy and genteel entertainment offerings. There is a board game corridor. I didn't use Canyon Ranch Spa. The ports were two of my favourite Australian places and we were greeted with fine weather. Port Arthur was a tender port and everything was run very smoothly. Lovely double deck tenders too. I didn't partake of any ship's tours. I would definitely cruise with Cunard again, as despite my niggles, it was a lovely experience and still felt special. I would probably choose an Interior cabin and just enjoy the facilities of the ship. For perks I will travel Celebrity. Read Less
14 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2017
Always wanted to cruise on Queen Mary 2 and experience the legend, Cunard and the past splendour of a transatlantic ocean liner. It was also my first cruise. Sailing from Sydney to Tasmania - return seemed a good way to enjoy this ... Read More
Always wanted to cruise on Queen Mary 2 and experience the legend, Cunard and the past splendour of a transatlantic ocean liner. It was also my first cruise. Sailing from Sydney to Tasmania - return seemed a good way to enjoy this experience. The QM2 sailed from Sydney to Port Arthur, Hobart and return to Sydney. From the moment you board QM2, you are taken to a past luxury and the best of British sailing history. The ship is truly large, beautiful and an experience to do at least one in your life. Staff were always friendly and always able to help you. Service is a hallmark of the QM2, so is the dining experience and entertainment. Tenders to Port Arthur were well organised and presented with no problems. Major Likes: The Veranda Restaurant - you have to book early to dine at this signature restaurant, but the service and meals were truly wonderful and the price extraordinary value. Food at all the ships dining establishments was good. Entertainment was refined and so was dressing formal. Everything about QM2 is grand. Things to be aware of for maiden passengers: QM2 is not really a shopping mecca. There is a handful of stores and except for the two stores, the others are very upmarket and expensive. Also be aware that when buying on ship (like all ships), they pre-approve funds from your account and it can take 7 to 10 days to clear from your account once the bills have been processed. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2016
We paid a huge sum for 18 nights in top Queens Grill class. I found very little in return from Cunard/Carnival. We were not shown to our cabin (we did not know this ship). Except for breakfast the food did not reflect the flowery ... Read More
We paid a huge sum for 18 nights in top Queens Grill class. I found very little in return from Cunard/Carnival. We were not shown to our cabin (we did not know this ship). Except for breakfast the food did not reflect the flowery language of the menu. Food quality was not what I expected.Room service food poor.After we moved tables we were very happy with our waiters and we were also lucky with our cabin stewards. As on many ships staff are from some 60 countries so English language skills are variable. Our QG cabin deck 9 was large enough yet looked ordinary. Our wash basin was cracked and the shower was over the short bath.The double bed was made by pushing two singles together leaving a mattress gap in the middle.TV was very limited with no extra functionality. Balcony cabin doors were hinged not sliding so the slamming noise was frequent. Pools were ordinary. Entertainment cheap mostly, often one man performers. Ships Officers kept a low profile keeping hidden. The June 2016 major refit is vital. We paid a massive ticket price, daily service charge, and 15% drinks service charge on top. Value for money is missing. Read Less
21 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2016
The best things: An elegant ship. Attentive service; staff frequently carried the meal trays for my elderly mother in the Lido, excellent room steward - Louie, MDR maître d against expectations managed to change our late dining to ... Read More
The best things: An elegant ship. Attentive service; staff frequently carried the meal trays for my elderly mother in the Lido, excellent room steward - Louie, MDR maître d against expectations managed to change our late dining to early (only booked cruise 2 weeks before departure) - I think he was sympathetic to my mother eating earlier. Entertainment; on our voyage The Fabulous Beatle Boys, Lisa Crouch and Chris Gable were excellent. Promenade deck; great for walking off those calories (gym was decent - an extra challenge when doing core strength exercises with a Swiss-ball when the ship is gently rolling!). Cunard insight talks were interesting. Not so good: Food in Lido and MDR ranged from so-so to very good. I wouldn't rate anything as outstanding in these 2 dining areas. Eggs Benedict in MDR was one of the worse I've had. Pork loin in MDR was dry and tasteless, however, the mains (entrees) were usually decent. Fruit in Lido was disappointingly poor quality given there's plenty of decent fruit in season in Oz at the moment. Lido had a daily smoothie, which wasn't on the MDR breakfast menu but they would get it for you if you asked. Could get smoked salmon for b'fast in MDR (but never saw it in Lido). Hot soups were consistently very good though. Had decent tasting lobster tail (smallish) & prawns (shrimp) at last formal dinner. Baked Alaska for desert was good. I liked the modest serving portions for dinner in the MDR (I'm sure some would disagree). Staff on purser's desk weren't the friendliest lot. Excursions Only did the Kangaroo Island food & wine tour; the honey farm, dairy and wine tasting were ok, however, I'd rather replace the eucalyptus distillery visit with a seafood stop. Odd moment Louie left us a "complimentary" bathrobe - gee, I thought Cunard was being incredibly generous. Then he said a few days later that it was meant for the subsequent passengers in our cabin and if he could have it back! Just as well I didn't try it on. I suppose one could've pushed back and said 'bad luck, I'm keeping it, it's Cunard's mistake", but that's not me and he was a great room steward overall. I also suppose Cunard could've said it was a mistake but in an act of good will you can keep it (was that a pig flying?). Anyway, laughed it off as one of life's odd moment - then got around to polishing off the complimentary blanc de blanc. Read Less
52 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2016
Problems from the start. Ticketed as new cruisers when in fact it was cruise #3 for us , it took 3 visits to the pursers office (waiting in line) to correct that error. Even then, there was no way to ensure early dinner sitting, a ... Read More
Problems from the start. Ticketed as new cruisers when in fact it was cruise #3 for us , it took 3 visits to the pursers office (waiting in line) to correct that error. Even then, there was no way to ensure early dinner sitting, a requirement of our booking, yet never advised as a problem until we had been ticketed and fully paid up. Different table at most dinners. Did I say dinner? A sample from the Britannia's international menu follows. And I challenge you to find this in any cookbook. Taglioline (ribbon pasta) in a light tomato sauce and sitting on top: TWO turkey breast schnitzels! Missing items -No fried egg on top, and no chips! From what hell's kitchen did this dish emerge? Try cutting up turkey schnitzels on top of pasta without ruining whatever qualities you may have thought were present underneath! In the Lido each day, for breakfast there were the same 3 kinds of (possibly, it wasn't labeled) yoghurt, along with 2 or 3 kinds of melon: water, rock (sometimes) and honeydew. On the one morning bananas were served, they were soft and very close to black.In Sydney, our departure port, there were available abundant quantities of papaya, strawberries, raspberries, bananas, mangoes, plums, white and red grapes and pears. None of these was available. Instead we had the aforementioned melons, cut pineapple, and canned peaches, pears, prunes and pineapple rings. Smoked salmon with your breakfast? Forget it. Beef sausages? Forget those too. No just pork or chicken, every morning, day in and day out. And as for fish! Have you Aussies ever heard of a "long tailed snapper" that had all the markings of a sea mullet, (dark, large u-shaped remnants of scales on the black skin with brown flesh underneath, and the only whitish flesh in the centre. The whole lot tasting like something you'd normally throw to the gulls? )Try Cunard for a whole new understanding of this delicacy. In the Verandah restaurant which prides itself on a long tradition of French cuisine, I had to wait for French mustard to be sourced from somewhere else to go with my sinewy, overcooked rack of lamb. A French male, raised in a Paris restaurant, met at the pool, told me with a sad shake of his head, there is no French cooking in that restaurant. (The head chef is Indian, by the way, according to the staff announcement one evening.) The French man had been served a sole, and found it inedible, due to having been "white frozen" at the tips and edges.You know, that's when your fish has been exposed to too much air after a long, long time in the freezer, with lots of openings and closings.. Another Britannia restaurant special featured monkfish wrapped in bacon. Quiz question for junior cooks: how do you cook bacon to a point where it is cooked if you wrap it around monkfish? Answer: you don't worry about the fish Just make sure the bacon is cooked, and to hell with the fish. Another. What is the difference between a green bean and a khaki bean on a Cunard liner? Answer: none. Cook the crunch and the colour out of it. Some people might love khaki coloured beans. Fancy an early morning swim? Two outdoor pools are available, and you'd better love an icy cold shower to follow your swim, because there are no warm ones. Want a warm dip? $35 (AU $50 approx) per person per day will get you into a spa pool which on cruise lines at half the price are free of charge. Who spends all day in a spa pool? Even $5 for an hour might be reasonable, but $50 is outrageous. Glass of wine with dinner? $AUS20 for a "specially selected Cunard chardonnay. Origin ? Vintage? Who knows? House white we call this type of wine in Aus. Not happy? Try the Devlin's Mount Unwooded Chardonnay, not well known but only $AU 60 a bottle! I have a similar wine at home that I buy for $4. Not $40. Just $4. If your thing is 1960's pub food, 5th rate entertainment (you had to be there for THAT), drinks at outrageous prices, staff with attitude (understandably--some of these guys are ex QE 2 in the glory days, but are now trapped in a Cunard time warp) and prices about double the competition's, then indeed, Cunard is for you. No? Then forget it. Try Royal Caribbean or Celebrity instead. Read Less
16 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2016
We boarded QE In Sydney for a trip of a lifetime visiting mostly Japan on a leg of their World Voyage with some trepidation after a bad experience on QM2 last year. Worst cabin on the ship allocated to us in the week prior to sailing (38 ... Read More
We boarded QE In Sydney for a trip of a lifetime visiting mostly Japan on a leg of their World Voyage with some trepidation after a bad experience on QM2 last year. Worst cabin on the ship allocated to us in the week prior to sailing (38 days is a long cruise for such an "upgrade"????) . Numerous complaints every day on deaf ears finally cost us more than we paid for original cruise to be able to get some sleep, They expected this on credit card and would not listen that no one has that amount of spaRE money on their card. They were totally unapproachable to our dilemma, their service has gone and they still expect you to pay top Cunard prices. Shows were bad and dancers and singers poor, other choices even worse (a man standing on stage telling you how to pick-pocket was 1 show. At our higher price paid we could eat in Princess Grill, Staff excellent but food repetitious and once we got to Japan it was fish, fish or steak. No variety at all. Asked for chicken and got 1 tiny pace. 1 night. Lido staff lazy and food not the best but if you had early tour you had to fight the crowds there, Tours very overpriced and some were really bad. Need to look into itinerary more by staff). Never trust or travel Cunard again as felt they were filling their ships up with Aussies. Just to help pay for them in our waters band giving us NOTHING in return for loyalty, Carpet in cabin dirty, shower in bath not good for older people with artificial joints, balcony small, TV programmes old, 1 bottle of free water per day?? Hot water took 5 mins. To arrive. Not good with Norovirus onboard again plus well known "Cunard cough" everywhere you went on the ship. We also had to move cabins 3 times!!!! Poor choice of activities on sea days unless you paid "Nominal" fee of US$15 or played Bridge, but good library. One of us uses C-pap machine and first 2 cabins it was set up for us, last one we had to do it ourselves . We had taken our own adaptor plus and extension cord. But it ate into our shore time each time and they had deaf ears to the plight. Pursers staff were hopeless except for 1 young man, they just passed the buck all the time. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2016
We chose this cruise because of the ports visited. Good points. Embarkation was swift and we felt very welcomed by the staff. We loved the Royal Cunard Singers and dancers, and the Royal Court Theatre Orchestra are superb. ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the ports visited. Good points. Embarkation was swift and we felt very welcomed by the staff. We loved the Royal Cunard Singers and dancers, and the Royal Court Theatre Orchestra are superb. Plenty of variety at the Lido, hot food one side and salad the other., the hard working cooks do a great job. We loved our easter eggs to celebrate Easter and the beautiful Easter Egg display on Deck 1. Bad Points... The coffee/tea making area in the Lido Restaurant was very congested at times and with very little courtesy in evidence,it was a stressful experience at busy times, I was once pushed with hot water cups in my hand and no apology. Disembarkation in Southampton went smoothly after a 40 min wait to get the go ahead, shame to those who decided to join the queue at the front, disregarding those who were patiently waiting. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2016
We booked this World Cruise segment from Sydney to Hong Kong the day Cunard opened up the books a year and a half prior to departure. Having cruised on QE and also on QV before we knew what to expect but Cunard makes their World Cruises ... Read More
We booked this World Cruise segment from Sydney to Hong Kong the day Cunard opened up the books a year and a half prior to departure. Having cruised on QE and also on QV before we knew what to expect but Cunard makes their World Cruises always more special. The guests on this segment were overwhelmingly Australians with Brits, Germans and Americans also strongly represented. A port call scheduled for Cebu (Philippines) was cancelled prior to departure with an unclear explanation that suggested some security issue. Puerto Princesa was substituted and turned out to be quite acceptable. We were lucky with the smooth seas throughout and generally sunny and warm weather. There were about nine days at sea which nicely augmented the port days. Shore excursions were a mixed bag as is usual on most cruises, some very good others not so much. We took most of our dinners in the Queens Grill and were rewarded with uniformly excellent food and service as were the two dinners we enjoyed at the Verandah Restaurant. Most of our other meals we ate at the Lido and they were quite adequate. Having the Grills upper deck available to us for lounging and sunbathing was a nice bonus. Disembarkation at Hong Kong's Ocean Terminal was confusing but we did manage to make our way through the shopping mall to baggage claim. The only fly in the ointment was the disappointing quality of the ship's dancing troupe which has not improved since we last saw them three years ago. Over all, however this was a wonderful experience. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2015
After all the hype in the lead up what a disappointment to board a smelly ship no more than a floating retirement village including passengers dying or being taken by ambulance at every port. The food is bland and boring, the activities ... Read More
After all the hype in the lead up what a disappointment to board a smelly ship no more than a floating retirement village including passengers dying or being taken by ambulance at every port. The food is bland and boring, the activities are what I would expect in my fathers nursing home. The ship is caustrophic with no outside dining the only option is to try your luck in not catching the "Cunard Cough" they so lovingly call it when getting food in the Kings court and finding a spot outside to balance your meal in the fresh air. We wrote to the captain with our concerns of the flu and why people weren't provided with face masks in the public areas it was quite disgusting. Yep still waiting for a response - poor form Cunard. Entertainment was fair with some acts just not worth the time watching. Why do I have to pay for a fitness class? why isn't it included? at $15US that is $20 Australia ridiculous. They charge wherever they can, like how to use your Ipad my husband went along thinking he may learn something but he already knew how to turn it on!, yes please another $15. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2015
We did one month section of a three month cruise commencing in Sydney. This cruise was more suited to 75+ age group therefore as a very young at heart 60s couple we found it a bit dull compared to previous cruises with P&O. ... Read More
We did one month section of a three month cruise commencing in Sydney. This cruise was more suited to 75+ age group therefore as a very young at heart 60s couple we found it a bit dull compared to previous cruises with P&O. Unfortunately there were several deaths during our cruise. The entertainment was not to our taste and the resident cunard singers and dancers were dire. The kings court buffet scrum was best avoided and passengers 'grazing' from buffet stations was particularly distasteful. Found the constant touting by photographers very intrusive they looked insulted if you refused. The ship is looking a little tired in places. On the plus side the staff/crew were helpful and polite and the food in Britannia was good( It was not worth the extra we paid for Todd English) Cabin was suitable for our needs (Bed superb) We asked for gratuities to be taken off at the start of the cruise and tipped the staff we thought gave good service. Overall a good ship in need of refurbishment. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2015
My wife and I joined the Queen Victoria on the 11th March 2015 for the return passage to New York, arriving on the 25th April 2015. It was my present to her for her 70th birthday as a once in a lifetime experience. Whilst I must commend ... Read More
My wife and I joined the Queen Victoria on the 11th March 2015 for the return passage to New York, arriving on the 25th April 2015. It was my present to her for her 70th birthday as a once in a lifetime experience. Whilst I must commend the ship for its presentation, the quality of the food and the service provided to the "guests" as Cunard wish to call us, there were faults in the following. My wife and I took this cruise because it was for the senior person of our age and the dress code required formal and informal nights. As usual there were "guests" that did not enter into the spirit of the dress code and were allowed, by the staff of Cunard, to enter the dining room and the Lido in the wrong clothing. When I asked the matre de in the restaurant why this was being permitted, I was informed that the dress code had been relaxed on the return journey as it was relaxed on the outward journey. No body from Cunard informed us. The cost of the excursions were greatly overpriced and it was cheaper to arrange transport at the port. The cost of seeing the ships doctor was far to expensive at $92.75 for the preliminery consultation. I experienced wax in my left ear and was informed by the doctor that I had an inner ear infection, at the same time was informed that I should insert cotton soacked in olive oil into my ear three times per day and that would remove the wax.!!!!!!! My ear was cleaned by the nurse which solved the problem, but no medicine was given to me for the inner ear infection. My wife contracted the "Carnival Cough", as I and our friends also contracted in varying degrees, which lasted for the last three weeks of the cruise and totally spoiled that and the places we wished to see. On comming home my wife was admitted, via my 999 call, to the local hospital and was diagnosed with double pneumonia and on a points scale of 1-10 she was a 9. The next stage was intensive care. My wife spent one week in hospital and it will be another 5/6 weeks before she will hopefully recover. There were many, many "guests" on that cruise that suffered from the "Carnival Cough" and we know of friends that we made that when they returned home they to had to have anti-biotics from their doctors. This is a very serious matter that Cunard must prevent and not treat the "guests" as cash cows, $92.75 to see the doctor is far too expensive. We heard of a "guest" having to spend his holiday money for the doctors bill. The ship must be cleaned before it returns to cruising as those future passengers may well contract the "Carnival Cough". Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2015
The ship was cold 18-19 degrees - staff didn't respond until the last few days of cruise and then temperature rose to other extreme 28 degrees. Passengers all developed illness whilst on board. Some staff were very good but ... Read More
The ship was cold 18-19 degrees - staff didn't respond until the last few days of cruise and then temperature rose to other extreme 28 degrees. Passengers all developed illness whilst on board. Some staff were very good but generally staff needed customer service training. The ship ran out of basic supplies like cough medicine, hot chocolate, berries etc which meant passengers had to buy their own at various ports. Some of the fruit on display was rotten and they commented " it just discolouration". Not enough spoons to stir drinks - had to use forks instead, Queues to get off the ship at ports poorly organised (2.5 hour wait at one port). T shirts got burnt through soot coming out of chimneys on two occasions. To cap it all I tried to call Cunard to provide comments and they weren't interested - they asked me to hold the line while transferring me to someone more senior and following a 15 minute wait I was cut off. Worse cruise I've ever been on. Only thing I enjoyed was the Bridge classes Read Less
Sail Date: March 2015
Well, i would normally not write a review for such a short cruise on such a well know ship, but feel i must after whats been said lately. This trip was for a birthday present for some one who has never been on QM2. The three of us ... Read More
Well, i would normally not write a review for such a short cruise on such a well know ship, but feel i must after whats been said lately. This trip was for a birthday present for some one who has never been on QM2. The three of us arrived at the dock early, due to the flight from home and checked in our bags at 11am, we were escorted with help, due to one of us being in a wheelchair up stairs to the check in counter. The people behind were very friendly and we were checked in within 10 minutes. On boarding the ship I was acknowledged as being a return guest, nice touch. We went to our cabin, suite 10056, I found it very clean and neat, overall in very good condition, a little rust on some of the metal work on the balcony but very small and limited. The bathroom was so clean it looked as if it had been retiled, plenty of all we needed in towels and toiletries. Down to lunch in the Princess Grill restaurant, we were met and escorted to our table, with staff pushing the wheelchair for me. I had requested a table for four that was wheelchair friendly and our table was perfect. The service was perfect, the food great, the wine prices still amazingly good, something at every level, that would suit every budget. The coffee as usual is fairly average and they did seem to have trouble knowing what a single expresso was a couple of times, but what we drink in Australia is very different from elsewhere on the planet, so you just have to make do. Th ship itself looks as good as ever, this is my fourth time on QM2 over the last five years and i was amazed at how good it looked, only very minor wear and tear. If you consider it is floating on the ocean, vibrating constantly and has 4000 plus people on it, (staff included), it looks remarkable. Disembarkation in Adelaide was painless. Overall the trip exceeded my expectations, after reading so many bad reviews i went expecting the worse, and was very happy with what I found. Cunard staff also went out of their way to help me and my guests, were very friendly, i never once encountered a "grumpy" staff member. The trip ended up being the perfect Birthday present. I look forward the next time.   Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2014
Well, this liner had been on my bucket list for 10yrs. I must agree with several other posters, especially about it being a floating retirement home. They told us onboard that the average age is 75, we are in our mid 50's and very ... Read More
Well, this liner had been on my bucket list for 10yrs. I must agree with several other posters, especially about it being a floating retirement home. They told us onboard that the average age is 75, we are in our mid 50's and very active. Now, dont get me wrong, I like elderly people, but get between a buffet or something free and a senior citizen, and theres a transformation....Ive NEVER come across so many nasty, rude, pushy people in my life. As my hubby says, just because you get old, doesnt mean you get nice...lol Anyway, I digress. The cabin was nice and adequate for our needs....inside 4th deck aft. No noise at night, close to lifts. I always make sure I dont get a cabin under the entertainment or restaurants. Our steward was very nice, we hardly saw him at all.Our cabin was always clean, towels lovely and fluffy, lots of room for your clothes. We were assigned to the Brittania restaurant, 1st sitting. Our waiters were very friendly and attentive. The food was excellent, the drinks were very expensive. The shows were under par, except for a few external entertainers that blew our minds. We went down to the ballroom every night to dance. the band was good. The carribean band was awesome and really got the crowd going.....well, the ones under 60 anyway!!! one of the Ukranian waitresses was awesome, she brought us water without being asked when we were dancing, and was very friendly, unlike some of her collegues. The planitarium was good, if you could find a seat that worked. We saw 5 movies, which was something for us as on other cruises we never got to the cinema. Went to a series of lectures about the universe, they were good, read 5 books, slept a lot, read again, slept again.........getting the picture? not much in the way of entertainment, but I guess at 75+ all you want to do is sleep and maybe read...lol This was a real let down for us, as we are so active, we did get bored and were well and truly ready to get off. The shore tours were ok and expensive. We were 5 hrs late in Shanghai, due to fog...I know not their fault, but they should have offered eveyone a refund on their tours. We missed the gardens as they were closed by the time we got there, they took us shopping, the tower was moot as we couldnt see anything, they took us shopping again...didnt even get to the Bund.....all in all it was a $268US shopping trip, which we could have done for $78US. Not impressed as were 90% on the tour. All in all it was way under our expectations. Shes a grand old lady, but thats where it stops. There is a class distinction on the ship and at times I felt I was a steerage passenger. I would definitely not reccomend this cruise to fun loving Aussies or anyone under 70. I may one day go on her again when Im in my dotage, but even then I would probably not find much to do Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2014
Sydney - Sydney... Royal Circumnavigation of Australia 19th February - 14th March Category Q5 Suites 10074 and Q1 9069 ( Sandringham Duplex ) It was the first time I have been on a cruise in over 20 years and the first ever cruise for my ... Read More
Sydney - Sydney... Royal Circumnavigation of Australia 19th February - 14th March Category Q5 Suites 10074 and Q1 9069 ( Sandringham Duplex ) It was the first time I have been on a cruise in over 20 years and the first ever cruise for my wife. From the time we embarked to disembarkation it was one of the best most luxurious holidays I have ever had. The Queens Grill is best described as the equivalent of first class. The suites were very comfortable with king bed, walk in wardrobe dressing table, living room, large balcony, large bathroom, bar/ kitchenette and butler service. Dining in Queens Grill was exceptional with anything you could want Caviar, foi gras, truffles, head waiter would cook whole Dover sole, Chateaubriand, beef Wellington, duck a l'orange, lobster and crepe Suzette at your table. The menu changed for lunch and dinner daily, all the finest ingredients you could ever hope to eat. The passengers in general would have average age of 70 we were among several couples in our 50's and there was a lady on board who celebrated her 101st Birthday. The entertainment was fantastic with two huge theaters and Ballrooms and numerous bars and pools to enjoy. The musicians entertainers and speakers were all of the highest standard and most interesting. Sir Jackie Stewart (Ex Formula 1) was an example of one of the speakers on board and was just inspirational. The planetarium is also not to be missed. The ports and excursions around Australia and Bali were fantastic and very well organised. The last two days of our voyage were spent in the best suite on the ship Q1 Sandringham Duplex suit two floors of luxury. Ground floor has entry foyer, butlers pantry, guest bathroom, study, library, huge lounge room, dining room and of course the huge balcony overlooking deck 8 band area and pool. After mounting the beautiful staircase you have exercise bike and binoculars on landing the master suite with two walk in wardrobes each side of the bedroom and massive bathroom with huge roman bath separate shower and toilets. All in all the best holiday ever and we have stayed in some of the worlds best hotels and resorts.....nothing compares to the luxury that the QM2 can offer. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2014
Cunard Queen Elizabeth: 17 Day Cruise Sydney - Kobe Japan. Review partly composed 10 days into the 17day voyage as you are constantly reminded by the crew announcements; this is not a cruise but a voyage. Completed upon return to land. ... Read More
Cunard Queen Elizabeth: 17 Day Cruise Sydney - Kobe Japan. Review partly composed 10 days into the 17day voyage as you are constantly reminded by the crew announcements; this is not a cruise but a voyage. Completed upon return to land. Costs: Flight to Sydney $395.00 Cruise cost $ 7950.00 Flight Japan -Australia $3650.00 Onboard spend: $ 1395.00 Travel to airports: $350.00 Total cost: $13, 740 = $808 per day. Costs shown to enable comparisons to be made. Short synopsis purely a personal objective. A most luxuriously fitted out ship, wood panelled veneer everywhere you turn, ship maintained to a high standard. Ships crew were very stayed, straight laced, always formal, never a smile to greet or serve you. Cabins are smaller than other cruise lines balcony grade cabins. Bathroom extremely compact, the smallest hand wash basin I have ever encountered on any modern cruise ship/liner, small shower, has plastic curtain, no sliding perspex doors here. Beds are typical cruise ship quality, made to be comfy but not luxurious. Sufficient numbers of deck lounger's, no mattresses, just mesh, not comfy. Princess Grill passengers are provided with a separate deck area which has sun lounger/chair quality mattresses provided. They also benefit with other privileged areas, mere mortals are forbidden to enter. Cunard it seems, are simply pretentious by segregating passengers on cruise ships in 2014. If you like being segregated and treated as an economy passenger on a luxury liner then this could be for you, if on the other hand you dislike being class divided then look at a more relaxed and friendly welcoming line for your well earned holiday afloat. Dirty mattress protector on bed, mattress protectors not routinely changed on change over day. Check yours upon arrival, be safe and secure in the knowledge that what you are sleeping on is clean underneath the sheets. The review: A disappointing arrival at Circular Quay after our flight to Sydney, Cunard were refusing passenger's entry to the pre boarding formalities if your designated time on your ticket had not yet passed. We were 2 hours premature and were firmly told to remove ourselves from the line and simply go away. Pleased we had not travelled from the other side of the world; we left the line, departed the quayside knowing Sydney and went for lunch. Returned 2 hours later and now anyone and everyone are now being allowed in the line, 45 minutes later we are on board after being kidnapped by the youngest, lying photographer, insisting that it was compulsory for identification purposes that we must partake in this pointless exercise. Utter rubbish. This already is showing the arrogance of this ships crew and as yet we have not totally crossed the gangway. Once through another line of security we are finally on the ship. Arrived at the designated cabin where our luggage had beaten us, we immediately unpacked, small but adequate wardrobe space for our 17 nights, could not image how we could have coped with a world cruise with such tiny spaces allocated for clothes. Cabins: If you are accustomed to cruising with P&O UK, Celebrity, Royal Caribbean or indeed most of today’s modern cruise liners, then these balcony cabins will most definitely disappoint. They are well designed but space in these cabins is at a premium, cramming more cabins onto each deck, to make the company shareholders of the Carnival Corporation even richer. Compact/cramped, yet just enough sufficient space would be a good description of these cabins. Upon arrival our cabin appears clean. However, 3 days into the cruise, whilst taking an afternoon nap, (sea motion always sends me into a relaxed sleeping mode) I awoke with insect bites on my neck and head. First thing I thought of was bed bugs, so stripped the bed and found that the mattress protector was extremely soiled with yellow stains clearly evident in many separate areas covering the bed, some really large and quite disgusting. Proof that mattress protectors/mattress pillow tops are not routinely changed on cabin change over days on this ship. Cabin steward says it was other guest’s sweat/perspiration and not urine. It was clear this was not the case as the location of some of the marks were consistent with it being urine, although at the top of the bed we could accept this could well have been perspiration marks. We also noted on other change over days, in other cabins they too did not have their mattress protectors routinely changed as part of the bed linen change. Suggest that everyone check upon arrival on every cruise ship or hotel their mattress protector under the clean sheet to check the cleanliness, lesson’s learned here for us certainly. Food: Breakfast in the lido was not exceptional but had an ample selection, although the cooked breakfast offered, always had fat soaked sausages, hard “soft” eggs, salty bacon, blackened cooked tomatoes and even tinned mushroomed which were heated and served black. Lunch again at the Lido, this was not to the high level of Royal Caribbean or Celebrity, bread for sandwiches available from one station with a most unhelpful individual always in attendance. Bread always dry and hard, as from our observations it was placed there in the open air for the lunchtime sitting from 10am, everyday the same result, bread for making a sandwich was dry, as if it was actually stale. The other selection of hot and cold food was plentiful, yet mostly always “Much of the same”. Very English on the 1950's not in today's world, stuck in a time warp. Vegetables, in the main, soft and well overcooked, not much variety outside of carrots, cauliflower and green beans. A pretty poor show for such an expensive cruise. Most days they only offered 5 choices of deserts, apart from 2 sea days when we had a great selection as I have previously experienced from other cruise lines. What about the other 15 days, overall in the Lido food acceptable but not outstanding or memorable for the right reasons. Everyday not enough linen napkins at any service, only paper one’s available and thin small ones at that, what a disgrace for a supposedly 5* cruise line. Extremely low service levels and quality. Evening quality and choice/variety was extremely low, never have we encountered in 20+ years of cruising such a low standard of an evening. Britannia Restaurant: Nothing exceptional or memorable here, just plain straightforward cooking with small portions, particularly the entrée/starter. Definitely not up to the level of any course on Celebrity or RCI, or even half as good as our last trip on Ocean Princess, where the food was simply outstanding, as indeed it was on Celebrity Solstice last October 2013. The PVC covered chairs in both the Lido and Britannia restaurants make it a most uncomfortable dining experience as these chairs then cause your perspiration not to dissipate but to leave you feeling as if one is incontinent, when you stand to leave and your backside is soaking wet, not a good feeling to walk away with wet pants. Who thought up that design, plastic/pvc chair coverings and not fabric. What an error of design with all of these chairs! Evening entertainment: So far 10 days in and only one ships stage performing company show, which was mediocre at best, no singing, just dancing and after 45 minutes of solely dance to an audience of 65 plus aged pensioners, where most are now asleep, could not be describe in any other words than, boring. All the other theatre shows performed each evening were poor entertainment value from third rate no name street performers. Absolutely and truly a disappointing and shocking level of entertainment from a once renowned liner of distinction on the high seas. If you like good cruise ship theatre shows then this ship is not for you. If however you just like to ballroom dance with accompanied band music, then this could be up your street. Along with the straight laced service and at times intimidating staff's attitude, then again this could be a cruise line for you. In the 17 days of our VOYAGE, only two cruise shows, good work if you can get it! Dress Code: If you like wearing a jacket for breakfast, for lectures, for lunch, for every dinner, then you have found a ship to satisfy you. Too much formality, too much stiff upper lip old boy, too much of, you do as I say and not as you like, you will do as we say, after all you are simply and just, paying our wages and we serve you, knowing that we are superior to you as you are a second class passenger at best. Sorry to say, Cunard you are too pretentious for the majority of today’s fare paying passengers. My last time on such a ship, ever!   Read Less
14 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2014
My wife has never set foot on a Ship. If I was going to get my wife interested in cruising it had better be comfortable and luxurious. Answer book a cruise first class on QM2. We spent the better part of the voyage in Q5 Queens Grill ... Read More
My wife has never set foot on a Ship. If I was going to get my wife interested in cruising it had better be comfortable and luxurious. Answer book a cruise first class on QM2. We spent the better part of the voyage in Q5 Queens Grill and for last 3 day Q1 Sandringham Suite. Just sensational. The dining breakfast lunch and dinner in Queens Grill is without parallel you could have whatever your heart desires from caviare to truffles, fois gras etc. etc.. The wine list amazing and the service just impeccable. We may have been among the youngest couple on board but had an absolute ball the whole time. We loved getting dressed up. Putting on Black Tie and evening gowns for the formal nights. Loved going to the Commodore's Club bar for drinks and then into Churchill's for Cigars and port. Made some great friends and, met many interesting people. The acts the shows the speakers were all world class entertainers. Sir Jackie Stewart was guest speaker and we took over his suite when he disembarked in Melbourne. The Sandringham Suite was opulent and enormous on two levels with king size bed overlooking the stern and out to see just amazing. Down stairs the lounge and dining room all with massive balcony the perfect place to party with friends we had made on board for our last two nights. I can honestly say, it was the only time that after getting back from holiday we wanted to stay on board and keep going. Read Less
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