Author Topic: New Years Eve on Queen Mary 2011-2012  (Read 10623 times)

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Online cunardqueen

Re: New Years Eve on Queen Mary 2011-2012
« Reply #15 on: Jan 30, 2012, 01:54 AM »
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Entry to the Grand Salon.Portable bars on the right side.

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Note the prefilled chilled water and one knife ::)


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The venue !! and that iconic map

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« Last Edit: Mar 19, 2022, 04:32 PM by Rob Lightbody »
From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!

Online cunardqueen

Re: New Years Eve on Queen Mary 2011-2012
« Reply #16 on: Jan 30, 2012, 02:46 AM »
The venue for tonight's Grand New Years Eve Dinner Buffet was the Grand Salon. The same venue where the famous Champagne Sunday brunch is served.If you've been to the Brunch then you will know just what a vast range of items are there and just what a set up they do put on. Tonight was slightly different, the Buffet display was underneath the map of the Atlantic and while the choice and range wasn't anywhere near the same as the brunch (that is by no means a criticism!) it was still an amazing display.

Buffets l always think, and more so in America really should come with a warning, l always end up with my first plate heaped full, but this time l sought common sense and little and often was the routine, but heck even that takes will power. What limited will power l have doesn't last long at Buffets anyway. A vast array of cold starters and the hot buffet carving station where the chefs were only to pleased to carve up the choice of hot meats, my eyes of course caught the dessert section and knew l would have to save space for that.
The service during the buffet was as always perfect, you left your seat, and they cleared the plate, the water was topped up when you were there. Plenty of staff on duty, the service at some buffets can be a hit or a miss in that sometimes your previous plate can be still on your table when you return, ok its only a tiny niggle.but these things do add up. The servers were all as usual polite friendly and happy to chat, my only thing which l don't like (and it seems to be an American thing) is this one knife lark throughout. You can even leave it on the plate and the servers will very kindly place it back on your table rather than give you a clean one.
 But then when your out dining in America Iv noticed the different eating habits compared to the UK, of course the Americans notice our eating habits and quite probably think we are equally strange, it took me some time to realise that my toast at breakfast times was already buttered and l was putting butter on the unbuttered side.Im probably best to shut up about eating habits....well really who checks the underside of toast anyway..

 The portable bars were doing a brisk trade, and given the size, they appeared to have nearly every drink you could think of. The price was l must say very reasonable and very quick service, though the ice bucket on top full of dollar bills is of course a gentle reminder that "they accept tips" and given the service, in general l found it was always a pleasure to do so. The uk is sadly lacking in this customer service. Again its the small things but when the bartender remembers what you had the last time, its always a big plus in my book. Working in the bar trade lm more aware that when your out and about, buy the barman a drink at the start and chances are you wont really have a long wait the next time your at the bar, and if your lucky maybe a tad extra.

The Grand Salon wasn't full by any means, but it was certainly very busy. When dessert time came, again a nice choice of items, and in true QE2 fashion the little fruit tartlets,  synonymous with her Afternoon Teas, it was of course appropriate to raise a glass to dear old QE2 and thinking about how her New year party went. It would have been nice to attend l thought, BUT given the limited information and seemingly last minute planning l was perfectly happy where l was, and the more you read, the more you wonder if it might have been a disappointment what with security guards and portaloos....

They had scheduled the two firework displays for 9pm and Midnight, the earlier one was of course a great way of ensuring that most if not everyone would be away and on deck by 9pm so they could ready the place for the evening entertainment, that was to stop at midnight and then the poor staff would have to reset and get the place organised for the following days brunch..and that would probably take several hours!
           
« Last Edit: Mar 18, 2022, 11:49 PM by Lynda Bradford »
From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!

Online cunardqueen

Re: New Years Eve on Queen Mary 2011-2012
« Reply #17 on: Jan 31, 2012, 12:49 AM »

The little fruit tartlets were a reminder of the Afternoon teas on QE2.....

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« Last Edit: Mar 18, 2022, 11:50 PM by Lynda Bradford »
From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!

Online cunardqueen

Re: New Years Eve on Queen Mary 2011-2012
« Reply #18 on: Jan 31, 2012, 02:00 AM »
With just over three hours of 2011 left we both left the Buffet and headed out on deck to see the Firework display, it was also a good way of ensuring that everyone was out of the Grand Salon and up on deck. To be in Long Beach (and it was winter!) that last thing l expected was fog, and it wasn't just any old fog but thick fog.If you've ever visited Long Beach you will be aware of just how bright a place it is at night, well we couldn't see anything! the firework show started and we could hear the bangs, but heck we couldn't see anything.
 Its fair to say most folks were out on deck, and it was really nice to see the ship alive with passengers, in fact given the weather you would have thought we were mid Atlantic.
 
The forward bow area had their vip party (extra charge) well under way but it was fun to mingle with some of the other guests, and inspite of the fog, the firework display continued on. A general walk round the ship was enough to realise that the rest of the parties were in full swing, the bars were doing a good trade and everyone was in good spirits, and during the whole evening l couldn't say l saw anyone who was obviously drunk, had this been Scotland, l dare say some might not have even made it to midnight.

 We settled on the Dueling Pianos in the Queens Salon, Given the choice of venues there and the Observation Bar seemed the place to be. The Pianists were very good, with a lot of audience participation and great music and every seat taken, and many more standing. (turns out they were in Vegas the next week) Even with the crowds the bar service was pretty quick, but l had a special bottle of Vintage Veuve 2002 which was already in the cabin in the ice bucket, and now seemed as good a chance to go and get it, which l did, the bottle cover was an extra touch & it kept it cold,plastic glasses for safety sake and with that made my way back to the Queens Salon to get my cousin and we would move to the Observation Bar.

Passing through the Main Hall Everette and Greg were on duty in their finery, giving out directions,alas they were working and had to decline a glass of fizz, but on my next visit l will make up for that..
 
 The Observation Bar was as expected busy with the Jazz band and New Year 2011 was quickly slipping away, l never really cared for New years Eve, the end of one year and lord knows what the next one would hold, and if that wasn't enough l was usually working, but this time, even with the different location the emotions do run a bit high, and l still couldn't get the Poseidon Adventure out of my mind, corny l know.

The champagne was popped and duly  sampled, the atmosphere was nothing short of amazing, here was little old me half way round the world with my cousin, both of us from the same Island in Orkney, and yet now he lived some 40 km away from here and together onboard the magnificent Hotel Queen Mary this New Years Eve. l could scarcely believe l was here, But here l was,now seemed as good a time to charge the glasses, the Band were starting the countdown New Year 2011 was going out in style....
HAPPY NEW YEAR
2012 came in with a resounding Cheer as  Happy New Year was shouted out and the blowers were blown, heaven knows if the whistle sounded,we wouldn't have heard it anyway but time to wish those nearby a Happy New Year, the champagne tasted even better this time round, a toast with my cousin to 2012 and absent friends, a fleeting thought of SS Posiedon, the atmosphere really was quite something else, nothing like the New Year back home with the pipes etc, this New Year was just so different in every way, A quick phone call to the family back home,no blocked lines as is normally the case and it was shortly after 8am with them so l could wish them a proper Happy New Year.           
« Last Edit: Mar 18, 2022, 11:50 PM by Lynda Bradford »
From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!

Pat Curry

  • Guest
Re: New Years Eve on Queen Mary 2011-2012
« Reply #19 on: Jan 31, 2012, 07:36 PM »
I am sooo enjoying your reports.  It's all mouthwatering Myles. And I don't just mean the food.

I love the aged chef bottom pic reply #22.  I presume the on board galley(s) are operational for day to day hotel restaurant cooking.  

Dominque said " what a dapper young man" (in bottom pic #18).  I replied "yes and Myles looks good too"  
 
Seems to me you were at the best Queen party of them all ( inc new QE, Q Vic, QM2 and the beloved QE2.  Amazing to think they were all at it on that night.

How does QM rate as a hotel? Please give a professional inspector's report.

And how much was a night on board QM for NYE?

Online cunardqueen

Re: New Years Eve on Queen Mary 2011-2012
« Reply #20 on: Feb 01, 2012, 09:24 PM »
Quote
  And how much was a night on board QM for NYE?     

To me given the fact l was half way round the world,l wasn't working over the festive season, there was no way l couldn't spend this time any where else other than onboard Queen Mary. So from my way of thinking l honestly didn't consider what l paid as being expensive, plus l was onboard, to me,a  very special and unique ship, and what price can you put on that?
Given that most hotels do jack their rates up for this time of year, having said all that to give an idea the Mini suite New Years Eve package was $599 normally its around  $180 a night The Full blown suites were quoted at over $800 The Queen Mary Suite l had last year is normally around the $450, but when your up in that price league you do have a certain amount of perhaps luck in obtaining a lower rate.  (l did pay somewhat less than that ) The buffet was $88 a head.Ok l could have had a cheaper cabin but l wanted separate rooms.
Given that the package rate also included  two tickets for upto 8 party venues, it included the Champagne Sunday Brunch for two which is normally around $50 each.The VIP party on the bow was an extra charge.The nice gift as well was an added touch.
For people who wanted to party and were not spending the night, there was also the General Admission price that they had to pay ontop of any Dinner tickets

The night before l had a nice cabin a Deluxe King size for $144. The night after New years Eve they had promotions for rooms where you could stay on in the same cabin for $70 (That's a great incentive to fill rooms on probably the quietest night of the year) and probably most would have had breakfast as well which is extra...

To Joe Blogs in the street yes its expensive.But consider how much Edinburgh or London charge for the same period, theres no way you would have had the same size room for that rate.
  The Hotel Del Coronado in San Diego for the same time was charging much more for less, that would have been my second choice, it is a lovely hotel....
Sure in general terms when your booking the Queen Mary there are various discounts,general tips and things that can be done that might ensure your paying the lowest rate for the grade your in, but when your dealing with Christmas/New year your are paying a premium for that alone



Quote
  Seems to me you were at the best Queen party of them all ( inc new QE, Q Vic, QM2 and the beloved QE2.  Amazing to think they were all at it on that night.

     
And what Queen doesnt enjoy a good party.... ;)

« Last Edit: Mar 18, 2022, 11:51 PM by Lynda Bradford »
From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!

 

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