Author Topic: Rob's July 2015 transatlantic QM2 Review  (Read 9213 times)

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Offline Rob Lightbody

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Re: Rob's July 2015 transatlantic QM2 Review
« Reply #15 on: Aug 04, 2015, 05:06 PM »
Hi,

Thanks for your review review!  Sorry for keeping quiet about being aboard, I just wanted to keep myself to myself.  I was rather worn out from Work, so it was really just to rest and relax, and a way to get home from New York!

This was probably the only transatlantic i'll ever do, especially if they're on a go-slow.  An 8 night crossing means a lot of my annual holiday allowance is going on Atlantic sea days...  My current cruise rate is once every 3 or 4 years, with lots of other varied types of holidays in between. 

I didn't mention our FlyBe flight home in my review, which wasn't great.  A tiny plane where the approved cabin luggage size didn't fit anywhere, and a restricted 20kg hold weight limit.  I would tend to avoid next time.

This was not a cheap holiday for me.  With the price of transfer flights, taxis, tips, hotels and drinks, it was an expensive holiday.  I have a good job, but this was top of budget for me.  I think they made quite a nice profit off me, all in.

You call my review negative (it wasn't meant to be, it was meant to suggest easy improvements) but then you agree with pretty much all my points!  I deliberately didn't repeatedly compare her with QE2 in my review, as there is no point, but i feel that they could relatively easily make a lot more of what she is now, even before the refit.  Their brochure and marketing builds up a lot of hype and expectation, they need to make sure what happens on board actually reflects it.

She's still fabulous and unique though.  I hope Stephen Payne remains proud.  One point I forgot to make was that on the Atlantic, she didn't feel overly-large, she felt just the right size I think.

- Rob

PS: I can't bring myself to say stateroom, even though I know thats the correct term.  To me, its a cabin!  Stateroom always sounds like a huge room in a palace or something to me...
Passionate about QE2's service life for 40 years and creator of this website.  I have worked in IT for 28 years and created my personal QE2 website in 1994.

Online Isabelle Prondzynski

Re: Rob's July 2015 transatlantic QM2 Review
« Reply #16 on: Aug 04, 2015, 06:15 PM »
Rob, I should have commented much sooner on your excellent review. It was great that you took the time and care to write up QM2's features and include suggestions as to how they could work even better.

I doubt I shall ever set foot on her -- but if I do, I shall come back here to read it all again!

Trevor, thank you also for your own review and comments. It is always helpful to see several angles to a story.

Offline Alan Snelson

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Re: Rob's July 2015 transatlantic QM2 Review
« Reply #17 on: Aug 04, 2015, 06:29 PM »
Very interesting and informative to read the observations from both of you. Like Isabelle I doubt that I will ever take a trip on her, even though I would like to. The Stateroom thing was something I never got either, sounds dreadfully pretentious.
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Offline cunardqueen

Re: Rob's July 2015 transatlantic QM2 Review
« Reply #18 on: Aug 04, 2015, 08:36 PM »
Quote
You call my review negative (it wasn't meant to be, it was meant to suggest easy improvements) but then you agree with pretty much all my points!  I deliberately didn't repeatedly compare her with QE2 in my review, as there is no point, but i feel that they could relatively easily make a lot more of what she is now, even before the refit.  Their brochure and marketing builds up a lot of hype and expectation, they need to make sure what happens on board actually reflects it.
   

Negative ..? a review is just that a persons own view of how they see things, Alas we are not all from the happy clappy ship that if its Cunard its got to be great and grand.

To cut a long story short, l stopped at Gleneagles last year and for ME it was a complete disaster, for my friend he enjoyed each and every moment, and questioned why l wouldnt leave a tip, simple l dont reward failure. Two different views from what is supposed to be a glorious 5 start product.

I have believe it or not casually glanced a Cunard brochure and requiring a masters degree just to understand it, and even looked at the crossings and do wonder if what is promised inside delivered onboard, but for me to spend   
the best part of 7 or 8 nights tootling over the Atlantic going one way is way to much time out of my holidays, and now simply is not an option.

Quote
  I didn't mention our FlyBe flight home in my review, which wasn't great.  A tiny plane where the approved cabin luggage size didn't fit anywhere, and a restricted 20kg hold weight limit.  I would tend to avoid next time.
 
Rob you have my sympathy, l would never fly them again ever, we call them Flymaybe.con up here, flew them once Inverness-London and what with the complete fiasco of security, mixed up seats,no drinks and a go around , it has provided entertaining after dinner tales...

Im more shocked at 20kg..... :o :o :o  ;)   
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 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!

Offline karl_nj

Re: Rob's July 2015 transatlantic QM2 Review
« Reply #19 on: Aug 09, 2015, 03:30 PM »
Boardwalk Café:
In all the seasons we have been on–board never ONCE have we seen it open. Jan/July Transatlantic: June/July/August Fjords, Oct/Nov Canaries, Nov/Dec/Jan Caribbean. This time next year it will be Cabins/Staterooms probably.

I've eaten there a few times.  Only seems to be open on cruises, when in port.  Of course, most people are on shore then, so it's never very crowded.  And it seems like nobody actually knows about it.

For anyone that has never been, you aren't missing much.  The food isn't very good, and there isn't much of a selection.  Mostly hot dogs and overcooked hamburgers.  The room itself is a tiny, dark, depressing looking closet.

However, the deck outside is a very nice place to eat.  They also have someone from the bar department up there with a selection of beer on ice.  The tables have umbrellas so you can sit in the shade, and you have great views of wherever you are docked at.

The views were the main reason to eat lunch up there.  If it turns out that the expanded kennels end up taking over this space, it's probably not a huge loss.

Offline karl_nj

Re: Rob's July 2015 transatlantic QM2 Review
« Reply #20 on: Aug 09, 2015, 03:43 PM »

Terrace pool and bar.

This is meant to be the luxury adults-only area.  The pool and hot tubs are not meant to be for kids.

- People let there children, including toddlers, into the pool and hot tub.


That's really unacceptable.  It's unfortunate that the staff didn't say anything to them.  The QM2 an entire family pool area a short walk down 2 decks, and kids shouldn't really be in hot tubs.

Quote
Sports Deck.

This was my favourite area.  All 4 shuffle boards were in near constant use, and I played until my arm hurt, getting rather good (the starboard side board was the easiest, because the caulking was best here)! 

Tennis was really great too - the area is perfect, with hardly any wind, a great view, and the fake grass feeling surprisingly real under foot. I even saw families enjoying the paddling pool in the safe environment.
BUT :- the Regatta bar seems permanently disabled, and there was no way to get a drink on this entire deck (madness - Cunard could make more money here).  Not even water, because the water fountain next to the tennis court was broken. 

Unfortunately this whole area is going to be cabins after the refit!

I've managed to get a drink at Regatta bar on Caribbean Cruises in 2008 and 2011.  Never seemed very busy, the bartender always seemed pretty bored.


Thanks for sharing your thoughts on your crossing, I enjoyed reading it and looking at your photos.


Offline tdickson

Re: Rob's July 2015 transatlantic QM2 Review
« Reply #21 on: Aug 10, 2015, 06:48 PM »
I have read everybody's comments after my personnel post, and take on board what has been said/written and even though I personally love QM2 and ever thing she is. I have got to GO with Cunard for this one, there is far to much un-used space on her and it needs to be utilised. As for faster crossings it is obviously not a viable proposition (To much revenue lost & fuel used)  There are many a business man/woman on board using the crossing as a time to catch up on paperwork etc. All good for the future of CUNARD

Offline Clydebuilt1971

Re: Rob's July 2015 transatlantic QM2 Review
« Reply #22 on: Aug 11, 2015, 02:34 PM »
Greetings everyone.

Thanks for review Rob.

I've made 3 TAs on QM2 - one in 2006 and a return in 2009. I've also been on one Caribbean (2008) and one Med cruise (2012) on her.

Stateroom TV: In 2006 it was more interactive in those days - you could look at your account and listen to music playlists, order your table wine for that evening etc. In 2009 this had been removed so it was basically just a TV. This is really lagging behind the likes of Celebrity whose room systems are powered by Apple and are vastly superior to anything Cunard have on their vessels.

Speed: - During our 2006 and 2009 voyages we were rarely below 26knots. On the NY-Soton voyage in 2009 we battled a Force 10 for 2 days then sped up to 30knts to make up time. I have the video taken from the "bump outs" on the after end and will remember that portion of the voyage forever.
Personally I think QM2 was never designed to doddle around at 16-17knts - she just never feels settled and as a result can make you feel a bit uneasy as her movement is not natural at those speeds - after all she was designed as a transatlantic liner so surely her hull form was designed to be most comfortable and predictable at higher speeds? As soon as she exceeds 21knts it improves - greater than 25knts she is at her best.

Boardwalk Café: It was open occasionally during our 2008 Caribbean cruise but never saw it open on any of the other times we were on her. Seemed to be a waste of a very pleasant area of the vessel.

G32: Went there once during the 2006 TA with some very pleasant Americans who were at our dinner table - didn't mind it too much but never returned.

Queens Room: Still never get the hang of getting around that area. It is a nice area of the ship but the entertainment it offers is not really my thing.

Commodore Club: My absolute favourite space on board! (same can be said of QV's CClub also) - loved sitting there during the Force 10 watching the waves coming over the bow and washing the windows!! Also a favourite after dinner haunt.

Terrace Pool: Our experience with Cunard is that they never enforce the adult only rule which is irritating. When we were on QV in the Med in 2010 Cunard revised the cruise to "kids go free" a month before we sailed but never told us!! (we'd booked during our return TA in 2009) - therefore there were kids everywhere and the crew weren't even attempting to control the situation. There were a lot of the "football strip" brigade on board that year as well so the dress code wasn't being enforced either!

Our last experience of QM2 was 2012 and as well as the obvious cost cutting measures in place she was beginning to show her age even then but that is to be expected with a vessel which is on the go pretty much 24/7 365 days a year - quite a lot of those days on the North Atlantic! I'm glad she will undergo this refit next year - its no less than the lady deserves.

I love her all the same though - I hope Cunard realise the shortcomings (most of which are just due to developments of technology or changes in habits since she was built), rectify them and improve them moving forward!

Gav
« Last Edit: Aug 11, 2015, 02:51 PM by Clydebuilt1971 »

Offline Hank Hargrove

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Re: Rob's July 2015 transatlantic QM2 Review
« Reply #23 on: Aug 29, 2015, 10:08 PM »
Here's my review now, sorry for the delay posting it!



This is the review of someone who always wanted to take a transatlantic, then unexpectedly managed to do one relatively cheaply as part of his summer holiday, combined with an exciting but brief stay in New York.  I like that it was an "ordinary" crossing... I'd have found the previous crossing too exhausting.

To summarise my review - the ship is awesome but not perfect, as are most of her staff.  The way she's operated can be frustrating, and it seems easy to see some easy ways to improve her, even for ways for Cunard to make more money from her.

I didn't take a million photos, as I've been on Queen Mary 2 before and was concentrating on having a holiday, but I took photos of things that interested me, or things that I knew would change in the refit....

I know many of you reading this have been on QM2 umpteen times, so please feel free to comment, or post your own reviews.  The only thing I'd ask is that we keep the QE2 Photo Gallery for QE2 only... my photos below are all held on my personal Flickr page.


Itinerary

14th July - boarding in New York
16th July - in Port, Halifax.
22nd July - Southampton

Embarkation and disembarkation

Incredible embarkation.  From stepping out of the taxi, to being on our cabin balcony took around 10 minutes.
Disembarkation seemed chaotic with everyone being allowed off regardless of whether it was their time or not.  Having said that, it didn't take us long. 
The West Quay Taxi transfer to Southampton airport (booked on board for $10) was effortless.  However I'm not clear why Cunard don't offer a bus to Southampton airport - lots of passengers were there with us.


Weather.

Good all the way, and often fabulous.


Speed.

22 to 23 knots until the last day, and then 17-18 knots.  I don't think I could bear a crossing at 17-18 knots, it just felt too slow, but 22 to 23 seemed OK.  On lower decks, the water appeared to be speeding by quickly enough outside.


Other passengers.

Very mixed!  A good range of ages.  Most people seemed to 'get it' and dress and behave appropriately, but some looked like they'd meant to get on a cross channel ferry and joined the wrong queue - complete with soccer tops etc.  Some (i won't say which country most of them were from...) were very rude and demanding, to staff who were doing a good job.  They were more "me" than the passengers we'd had on our short (cheap!) European cruise on her in 2012.


Our cabin

No strawberries to welcome us!!!  A cost-cut too far I feel!!   The chilled Pol Acker was present and correct though...

11122 was a 'BC' grade, which is one of the best ordinary Britannia grades. Even though it's only 5 cabins from the back of deck 11, it counts as 'midships'...  However nipping down to the Kings court or to go down to boat deck only took a minute or so.  We were told by 2 stewards that we could use the grills deck at the back of this deck - as long we were just passing through it. (I wonder if other QM2 past passengers on here agree with that?).  This made the back of the ship feel more QE2-ish than it had previously to me.

I was surprised to find it felt much more spacious than the previous cabin I'd had, 5146 - especially between the bed and the balcony.  The glass balcony was fantastic.  Stepping into the room to see the ocean moving by was a treat every time.  There was rust on the balcony when we boarded, which was magically painted one evening when we were at dinner.  However it's just been painted over, rather than scrubbed back to metal and treated properly.  I pushed a rusty bubble and it burst open with rusty water running out...  but the next occupant will not see rust on the balcony, and i suppose that's the main thing.  At one point the toilet roll holder came adrift of the tiled wall.  I left it hanging there.  That evening it had been partially fixed, but the following day it was properly permanently fixed - this was without me saying anything to anyone.  I was impressed.  The cabin's condition was otherwise perfect.  I still can't get used to the plastic bathroom, especially after QE2, it always feels like a ferry to me. The cabin TV system was blurry with very tinny sound - they need to improve this.  The screen that shows where the ship is etc. is not as good as the screen that was on QE2 in 2007/2008.  Bed was incredibly comfortable.  AC worked well.  Nothing was worn or dirty.
 
Above our cabin... the Boardwalk Café...?

Each morning at 8am (6 on the last day) the very heavy teak furniture for the boardwalk cafe was laid out.  This was right above this cabin, making it not great for anyone wanting a long lie - otherwise no noise was heard from above.  Questions : why do they put the furniture away each evening (conditions were calm, the furniture doesn't move easily) and why did the boardwalk cafe never open once? (more on that later).  Maybe if we'd been able to enjoy the cafe during the day, the noise of it being setup wouldn't have bothered us!


Closed due to inclement weather
by Rob Lightbody, on Flickr


Closed due to inclement weather
by Rob Lightbody, on Flickr


Dining

Britannia Restaurant.

I can only say it was disappointing.  Service was efficient but not particlularly friendly, and food was totally unremarkable.  After trying it twice we basically gave up.  Our penultimate evening, however, was on chief engineer Tony Kelly's table, and the food and service was signifcantly better, even though it was only about 20 feet from our normal table.  Tony seemed charming, but unfortunately I couldn't really hear him across the table in the busy restaurant, so I enjoyed speaking to others closer to me.  I never really got a chance to talk to him, and I don't think he knew why I was at his table...


Kings Court.


I thought the food quality and service was really exceptional, it seemed to have taken a step up since 2012 (and we enjoyed it then).  I just couldn't grasp why sections kept closing, with no warning.  For example, they'd be adding fresh hot food onto a tray, and then literally 30 seconds later, the entire section would shut, sometimes leaving you with half a meal on your table and having to go and hunt for the other half.  They didn't have trays - which to start with seemed daft to me - but I think it was making it function better.  People spent less time at the counter and there was less waste.


Kings Court a-la-carte.

Was extremely popular.  We did the Indian "Coriander" night, and it was really superb with a lovely cosy atmosphere.  I wanted to do the asian night (I forget its name?) but it was fully booked early on.  I couldn't help wondering if this was fully booked because Britannia was also disappointing other people.


Todd English


Really awesome, both the food and the service, and close to the experience I had in PG on QE2 in 2007 & 2008.


Public Rooms


G32

Truly dreadful.  I stuck my head in to check it was as bad as it was last time (smoky, smelly and unpopular) and it was.  Feels like an 80s club in Glasgow.

Queens Room


The “Blackpool style” ballroom dancing isn’t for me, so therefore most nights in the Queens Room aren’t for me, and I find it all a bit cheesy, but on the 2nd last night I think they had the full orchestra playing, and it was much better and i’d have stayed to listen if we didn’t have to be somewhere else!  I don’t love the Queens Room, but it's impressive, in its unique hard-to-get-to way.


Commodore Club

Still love it, it's still the most reminiscent of QE2's public rooms, but the cigar smoke smell was very strong indeed (they all kept opening the door between the club and Churchills) and we sensed that the wealthy guests were given priority treatment in this area.  One evening we waited for ages to order a drink, before giving up and retreating with our tails between our legs back down to steerage.


Champagne Bar.

This is a total failure of a space, in my view.  But I think it could be fixed quite easily!  With frosted glass between it and the lobby, it would get an exclusive feeling that it currently totally lacks. 


Sir Samuels.

I still like it, but I was shocked at the tables (dirt and crumbs around the edge) and the worn and dirty looking chairs.  It felt more like a cheap cafe.


Golden Lion.

Constantly busy.  I enjoyed a game of darts here, and loved the sea view.


Winter Garden.

I actually like it, especially in the evening.  It has the feeling of a calming retreat.  It also was a good place for them to show the golf open live or do small demos.


Pavilion

Sadly, this was basically a no-go area for me.  Dominated by children and their families, I only ever passed through rapidly.  They seemed to be enjoying it (in fact they rarely seemed to leave that room) so I was happy to leave them to it.


Planetarium.

First time I'd experienced this, and I loved it.  Although I think its smaller than planetarium's I've been to ashore, it envelopes you in the same exciting way.  Slightly difficult to get a ticket though - queue before 9am at Connexions.  There must be a better way.  And on a particular voyage, preference should be given to people who haven't already been.


Illuminations

Watched a movie here on a formal night, and totally forgot I was on a ship.  The cinema is a great space, although I think the projector may need upgraded as it was a bit blurry.  And here's an idea for Cunard for up selling that wouldn't ruin the ship - do what every other cinema does and sell popcorn!  (Just don't sell anything with noisy wrapping papers!).


Shops.

Oh dear oh dear.  a rack of sale clothes in the middle of the grand lobby, and temporary tables setup every night selling what I would call junk.  Now why don't they show that in the brochure....?  The shops could be so much better and, I think, more profitable.  A clever brand-aware merchandiser could work wonders.


The "Grand" Lobby
by Rob Lightbody, on Flickr

Book Shop - Chris Frame working wonders and dominating the book selection - but virtually no books left about QE2 which is very sad indeed.  I was amazed that even Cunard's own QE2 books from 2007 weren't present.


Photography

It felt like it was everywhere.  Constantly.  Every evening.  Including spoiling important public spaces.  For example, in the brochure, the elegant couple sweep along the corridor towards the Britannia Restaurant - but you don't see them having to step over cables, and step around camera equipment.


"Champagne Sailway".


It's too intrusive and I saw very few people indulging (most went to the bar and ordered something cheaper, that they actually wanted to drink).  Again this seems to take between 30 to 60 minutes to setup each time, spoiling the area during this important time.  Note that champagne is always available at the adjacent bar...


General thoughts about the ship.

Vibration

At the steady 22/23 knots, the ship vibrated as much as I remember QE2 doing in 1987 when she was on trials, being driven flat out, exceeded 34 knots, and bit of propellor had broken off!  And it was non-stop.  It definitely felt propellor related, given its rhythm.  This was felt throughout the back half of the ship.  It stopped when she slowed to the 17/18 speed...


Lifts.

Just an observation, but the lifts seemed very efficient.  They always appeared quickly, and seemed to get us to where we wanted quickly.  However I almost entirely used the stairs, for exercise.  Amazed by the number of people who took the lift just to move 1 or 2 decks. 

Did you know they go 'bing' for up and 'bing bong' for down?


Stateroom Corridors.

Seem to have thin carpets.  You can feel the metal deck going "clang" under your feet and they don't feel soft.  It feels like they just need underlay.  It feels cheap.  It doesn't feel like QE2 did...


Carpets throughout.

What is going on?  There are often craters which are big enough to trip on.  There's one in the Golden Lion that verges on the dangerous.  I think they said before it was underfloor fireproofing breaking up, and they fixed it on the main thoroughfare, but now it seems to be happening everywhere.


Windows throughout.

Many window units seem to need replacing with the view being either compromised or non existent.   On others the frames were very rusty and I found myself wondering if they'd cope with a big wave.


Space

Fantastic - lots of space.  If you wanted space to yourself, it wasn't hard to find it.  QE2 was like this too.  They must not ruin this in the refits.


Entertainment

For the sake of politeness, I won't mention the ones I thought were terrible but...


"International Band Xtasea".
They kept popping up everywhere and we didn't like them (everyone has different tastes but I'm afraid we just didn't think they were very good).  They seemed hard to escape.  Are they just "international" because the ship moves?

Pat Patton (Golden Lion).

This was an amusing moment.  The pub was busy (a sea day afternoon) with people chatting, or watching the Golf on TV.  Then Pat turned up at his allocated time.  Snapped off the TV, and started loudly playing the piano.  Within about 5 minutes, the pub was nearly empty.  It wasn't Pat's fault, but the rigidity of "the daily programme" sometimes made me laugh.

Chart Room entertainment.

I like jazz.  But not every night.  And not loudly, every night.  I think it was "The Jazz Club with the Harry Bolt Trio" (Rosie can confirm!)  Amazingly on the last night, Jeff Hughes from the Royal Court Theatre turned up and was simply superb.  Taking requests, and bringing the Chart Room alive.  MORE Jeff please!

Speakers

Lawrence Kunetz was fascinating and entertaining. He's been on other Cunarders including QE2 and I can see why..  Robin Oakley (the headliner, was interesting but a bit dry, and Nigel West obviously was an expert, but I found myself struggling to cope with the level of detail he went into, as did some of the others around me.  He maybe should reduce the detail for his audience!

Hilary O'Neil

I wasn't expecting much to be honest, but she was lovely, won over her audience immediately, and was genuinely funny in places.  I'm sorry she was only on once.


Outside Decks

Terrace pool and bar.

This is meant to be the luxury adults-only area.  The pool and hot tubs are not meant to be for kids. Subtle High-end Bose speakers surround the terrace, piping out quality "chill" music.    We made it into the Hot Tub, overlooking the incredible Manhattan skyline, enjoying the tunes and a cold beer.  I was looking forward to using this area throughout the trip.   It seemed to work well - until :-

- the smokers took up permanent residence.  Every single time I checked, every single chair was taken by the smokers.   This meant I couldn't sit there, and also made me feel uncomfortable when using the pool, as the steps are right there in front of them, and they're all sitting staring...
- People let there children, including toddlers, into the pool and hot tub.
- Xtasea appeared for sailaway with their massive speaker system being dragged across the deck (setup took about 45 minutes, ruining the atmosphere during this crucial time - why can't they plug into the Bose speaker system?).


Boat Deck.

Just awesome.  Incredibly popular - the steamer chairs and the walking and jogging (anti-clockwise only!).  And the lovely teak deck of course.  The front sheltered bit is still a very special space to walk through.


Taking it all in
by Rob Lightbody, on Flickr


Sports Deck.

This was my favourite area.  All 4 shuffle boards were in near constant use, and I played until my arm hurt, getting rather good (the starboard side board was the easiest, because the caulking was best here)! 
Tennis was really great too - the area is perfect, with hardly any wind, a great view, and the fake grass feeling surprisingly real under foot. I even saw families enjoying the paddling pool in the safe environment.
BUT :- the Regatta bar seems permanently disabled, and there was no way to get a drink on this entire deck (madness - Cunard could make more money here).  Not even water, because the water fountain next to the tennis court was broken.  Sun beds were strapped down and unavailable at the first sign of rain, meaning that 30 minutes later, people were roaming the hot sunny decks looking for anywhere to sit.  And the tennis court was still locked at 11am, causing a phonecall down to the pursers desk to bring a grumpy entertainment staff member up to unlock them.


DSC_0244
by Rob Lightbody, on Flickr


DSC_0212
by Rob Lightbody, on Flickr


Kennels

Were really busy!  I hadn't seen this before, and as a dog lover it was pleasing to see.  I was surprised to see that there was no lampost, and that there wasn't even fake grass for them...  they all seemed very happy and relaxed though.  We met a couple on board who's dog was on board, and they were delighted with the service and had only managed to get the dog on because someone else had cancelled.


Doggie Deck
by Rob Lightbody, on Flickr


Doggie Deck
by Rob Lightbody, on Flickr


Doggie Deck
by Rob Lightbody, on Flickr



The rest of my photos are here - https://www.flickr.com/photos/lightbody/sets/72157656224322605

Very glad you enjoyed it, Rob! I agree with pretty much everything you observed. I thought I'd make some observations as well from my July 2014 crossing, if that's okay:

Pool: The one thing that didn't bother me too much were people using the adults-only pool. I don't recall seeing many children, however, so perhaps it wasn't a problem, then. I did spot a couple of British teenagers and a little brother of one of the teenagers, but other than that, it was fairly relaxing.

Illuminations: I remember watching two movies, both starring Kim Novak, who was on board, and it was fun to take a photo with her in the commodore club. My film teacher was impressed. It's always nice to see Vertigo on the big screen.

Indoor/outdoor pool: I discovered early on that the indoor/outdoor pool stayed open later than the others and after eating dinner on formal/semi formal night, I would run down to my cabin on deck 6, change into my swimsuit, and run back up the stairs or take the elevator. I would run across deck 13 and question why I was doing so much running in the first place, and then arrive at the pool to find it deserted (everyone else in the Queens Room, Chart Room, or Commodore Club). I floated on my back in the pool and stared up at the skylight and saw the stars and the funnel. It was one of the highlights. I probably commited an ocean liner sin by running all that way in a swimsuit, but I was OCD about using the changing room for some reason. It was probably worth the run, though.

Boardwalk Cafe: I vaguely remember it. I feel we might have eaten there, but I can't remember. I remember passing my parents and brother all sunbathing and not acknowleging them since they were asleep and I had somewhere else to be.

I was unaware you could go to the stern and walk down the steps through Grill-class to the aft decks. That does feel more traditional ocean liner. I ended up in the grill class by mistake to see the Grill hot tubs. It was one of the awkward moments.
Library: By far my favorite room on the ship. I feel it could possibly be a better lookout point than the commodore club, which is the spiritual successor to the original Queen Mary's Observation bar. I found a nice chair overlooking the bow and read ocean liner books and relaxed in the sunlight streaming through the window.

Pavillion Pool: I enjoyed the pavillion pool very much

Fellow Passengers: We sat in the Britannia Dining room next to a family from Topeka KS. We struck up a conversation since we were from Tulsa, OK.

Winter Garden: This was such a relaxing space. The fountain made it so enjoyable. I am saddened that it is going to disappear in the refit. I hope the fountain stays where it is. The one complaint I have is that there weren't a lot of real plants. There were two real living trees on each side of the room.

Crossing Length: I felt seven days was slightly too long. I was somewhat bored by the seventh day, having fallen into a routine. The fog actually made it rather exciting, however and the boredom didn't stay too long. I stayed up that night and walked around the deserted QM2 taking last minute pictures. I looked out into the fog and on each side could see lights piercing the fog. France was on one side of the ship and the UK on the other. It was amazing racing through the fog with lights blazing from two major European powers surrounding us.

United Kingdom: It was wonderful. My only regret is that we didn't get to see more. I would have liked to have walked around Southampton and explored more of London. I'm glad we saw so much, but I wanted to see so much more.

Flight: We flew back using Delta airlines. I watched Taxi Driver and Frozen. It was actually fairly pleasant and quick. We had extra leg room.
The cross: The supreme symbol of love.

SS United States forever.

Offline SueOnOneDeck

Re: Rob's July 2015 transatlantic QM2 Review
« Reply #24 on: Aug 30, 2015, 10:53 PM »
hi Rob, 
   thrilled to hear you did a recent crossing !  i read thru your comments.  i've been on QM2 half a dozen
times, beginning with the maiden voyage.   i have always liked the ship and feel at home there, as
I now do on QV, which is more to the size I am used to. 
   Do you not feel, however, that the aesthetics that you mentioned, carpeting and whatnot, are
now in-waiting for the re-fit next May ??  ---when i'm sure all of this will be dealt with, as well as
having single cabins installed ??  Rust, however, is unacceptable !!  but i'm sure the ship will be spiffed
up bow to stern next year.
    Thank you for taking the time to write all of your comments and sharing the photos.  Cunard is an
entity unto themselves and they do things in their own ways, including taking excellent long term guests
off of their mailing lists.  But thats a story for another time !!!
    And oh, I DO really hope that the rude people you encountered on your crossing were not us Yanks !!!
best,   Sue.    :D

 

Robs review of M822 QM2 Fjords Cruise

Started by Rob LightbodyBoard RMS Queen Mary 2

Replies: 36
Views: 6306
Last post Jul 23, 2018, 02:52 PM
by Clydebuilt1971