Author Topic: Original Korkoid flooring ripped up in Queen Mary's Observation Bar  (Read 6565 times)

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Online Rob Lightbody

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According to the 'RMS Queen Mary' page on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/RMSQueenMary) just this week, the ORIGINAL Korkoid flooring in the Observation bar has been ripped out. 

Does anyone here have anything to add?  There are photos on that page. 

I find complaining about damage done to the QM years ago doesn't help anyone, especially not the current operators. But if they're doing damage NOW, they need to be educated!
Passionate about QE2's service life for 37 years and creator of this website.  Worked in IT for 27 years and created my personal QE2 website in 1994.

Online cunardqueen

I think anyone who visits Queen Mary will be surprised at just how good a shape she is in, considering where she is and the temps. If you are so inclined to seek out faults then sure you will find them.
 Personally l think having that poxy coffee shop next to the Prom cafe is cheap and nasty, but hey thats my thoughts. Some of the events are perhaps not best suited to the mood and style of Queen Mary but in saying that l saw a wedding set up last year and it looked like a chav set up. But who am l to comment. it is sadly income and bums on seats that bring in money.The money in bar takings alone from some of these is money that really you cant turn away.

If lm not mistaken didnt the owner of the facebook page actually once work onboard when she was in Long Beach. To his credit l do like the idea of The Club Queen Mary...but again its money to bring this into reality.

Queen Mary is a big ship, and yes lm sure it would be nice to have her opened all out and done up, but it takes a lot of money, and do we really need her all opened up. It is perhaps annoying to want to see one of the lounges and find its being used as a conference venue, but in the same way looking at a room brings in no revenue.
The Diana exhibit and the Afternoon Tea lounge are both recent additions, and while l didnt get to explore further on my last visit they both looked like places that are on the list for my next visit.
Iv always said that to really experience Queen Mary you need to stay over a night..im not really sure if the day trippers can grasp what she is offering and perhaps they might even come away with the idea is that it...     
All the past owners have tried to inject their own bit of magic into this lovely ship some have worked and some have failed.
One look at Stacks logo shop will tell you its all quality merchandise on sale, and the profits are ploughed back into the ship and yet round the corner on the Promenade deck is the most hideous shop ever imagined in what l would have said is prime retail space. (their profits are theirs to keep...)

I discovered (?) a vast exhibition area covering several decks, and l very much doubt most people will ever see it, Last New Year it was totally empty except being used to hold some left over xmas decorations, all the time l saw it l was thinking it should have been marketed for some New Year party, its own entrance etc but then given what else was on offer perhaps it wasnt possible to fill the space. Then again there was a vast empty boiler room through a couple of doors, not for public use.

Im not an expert, only a  tourist but When you do read all these reports of the damage done by the various operators, yes it is heartbreaking, But there is also a lot of good that is being done as well.And as Rob says all this complaining doesnt help anyone, couldnt everyone get their heads together...

The Chelsea chowder house, another nice restaurant onboard, BUT ontop of the tables is nice clean crisp linen, but thats covered with a sheet of brown paper ..... perhaps its the in thing, but l wasnt impressed.  anyway yet again lm off topic   
But l do love Queen Mary ;D
and while we are here...www.queenmary.com have a look folks!! 
From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!

Offline Jeff Taylor

I seem to recall reading that all the original floor coverings of both Queens were replaced after WWII due to all the damage and wear caused by the soldiers.  Hmmm...

Online Alex Tarry

I recall on my last tour of the ship (long time ago) they explained that in the original shopping area they re-placed the original lino like-for-like having found the manufacturer was still going in Scotland (still are, we have used them) so maybe there is still hope!

Offline Jeff Taylor

Yes.  That was a nice looking authentic job.

Offline riskygizmo

I recall on my last tour of the ship (long time ago) they explained that in the original shopping area they re-placed the original lino like-for-like having found the manufacturer was still going in Scotland (still are, we have used them) so maybe there is still hope!

That'd be Messers Nairn o' The Lang Toon. The smell of the boiled linseed oil used to dominate the town and was a big part of my childhood.

http://www.rampantscotland.com/poetry/blpoems_kirkcaldy.htm

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Online Alex Tarry

Thanks...what a great poem....the lino's pretty good too, we have it here at home...long may it continue...

Offline Hank Hargrove

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I agree with the previous comments. I think that the QM is doing well. The owners are taking much better care of her.

I often find myself at odds with Bill...Primarily because I think there is such a thing as too far. I don't like the FB page. For an organization (if you can call it that) that prides itself in trying to restore the Queen, they aren't very professional. They curse and use profanity all over that page. Last time I checked, that is unprofessional and can even cost you your job. I actually told someone off on the page who was talking and using the S word and I chewed him out saying that if he wants to be professional and help, he should stop swearing, because nobody will take him seriously. I STILL DON'T. I then added that it was coming from a 17 year old in Oklahoma. A state that those people running the FB page think is ignorant, backwards, republican, and hick. That is somewhat true, but not a whole lot. Also more people are registered as democrats in Oklahoma, but the difference is that Democrats in Oklahoma are more conservative than those in California and New York primarily because they are Evangelical Christians. I never got a response back to that...I think it freaked them out.

I also saw Bill's blog...I noticed he was ranting about the Lounge having its floor torn out by a zamboni and thrown away. That is incorrect! I contacted Long Beach and was told that there was water damage and the floor was torn out, but they restored most of it and what was damaged by water was thrown away and replaced by new identical (to a point flooring). So that was the truth...unless they lied, which would be embarrassing if a government official lied to a 17 year old Okie 1,000+ miles away.

I didn't realize the restored linoleum in the shopping hall was made by the same company. I think they are doing a really good job with QM. I also am curious about the logic of completely restoring the QM that the FB page talks about, including all of the public rooms...I just am not sure it is economical. Long Beach is cash strapped as it is. The fact that the ship will probably be painted and possibly the pool restored is money enough...I'm not sure if a full restoration would make any difference to the QM's economic situation. One of the problems is that it is in a city with about 465,000 people, which is big, but it would be best if she were in a city like L.A., New York, or even San Fran bay. Sadly, even with 1.5 million visitors each year (Empire State Building gets 3 million) money is still tight.

I agree with Bill on a lot of things. I think his heart is in the right place. I just view things slightly differently.

It seems you can find anything wrong if you look hard enough.

Actually, for the past few years, I believe the QM is actually turning a profit. I would hate to jeopardize that.

-Hank
« Last Edit: Mar 12, 2013, 04:16 PM by Hank Hargrove »
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Online cunardqueen

Quote
  I agree with Bill on a lot of things. I think his heart is in the right place. I just view things slightly differently.

It seems you can find anything wrong if you look hard enough.

Actually, for the past few years, I believe the QM is actually turning a profit. I would hate to jeopardize that.

-Hank
   
Well said .I always thought that facebook page perhaps does more harm than good..
From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!

Offline Hank Hargrove

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Thank you! I agree. I'm not sure what the FB page accomplishes myself.
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Online Rob Lightbody

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Thank you! I agree. I'm not sure what the FB page accomplishes myself.

I had been thinking the same, until I saw the story that I started this topic about which I still think was a terrible mistake on their part, yet to be explained.

The problem is that casual readers of the FB page may deduce that she's not worth visiting, which would be a terrible shame, as she is.  They need to be very clear about damage done by previous operators, rather than the current ones.  Previously done damage is water under the bridge.

However that page has taught me about all the extremely valuable, historical bits of furniture that are scattered around the ship, un-catalogued, and unbeknownst to visitors and staff aboard.  That sort of thing is really special, they can put so much magic and history back into the ship, and get people interested while they do it.

The ship needs someone who is an expert on her, and passionate about her, to be working full time with and for her operators in conjunction with a very good business plan to make money to put back into the ship.
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Offline Hank Hargrove

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Good point Rob. I am well aware of the past and present damage. I refrain from the facebook page primarily because I sometimes feel they chase after things that actually aren't what they seem (Though sometimes they do).

I was especially angered over the fuming about the First Class lounge having its flooring ripped out by the zamboni, and then discovering that they actually restored it and put what was not damaged by water back (Although I wish they wouldn't have taken the floor out with a zamboni).

That was a previous owner. I have yet to discover what the reasoning behind the flooring was. I am working on finding out if I can.

The one thing in recent times that I expressed outrage on was the incident where a bunch of stuntmen got loose in the pool and performed tricks on BMX bikes...and that wasn't just outrage for doing it indoors, but also for the fact that there are no windows, it is dark, and I was worried about them getting carbon monoxide poisoning or perhaps losing control and going into the pool tank, and breaking through three decks. I was worried about the bikers getting hurt. That was a while ago, and nothing like that has happened since.

I actually do know they are consulting experts on the restoration and repairs of the hull. They are planning to implement what ever is recommended by marine experts. I kind of like the guy in charge of QM restoration.

I actually got to see a lot of the scattered historical bits. A security guard took me on an unauthorized (I trust nobody will tell) tour of everything off limits. It was fascinating and sad. So I'm well aware of things like that. I try not to dwell to much on it. I'd love to see more done and I have a feeling like things are on an uptick!

Sorry if I got to detailed in my views. I'm trying to keep up on this topic!  ;D

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Online mgmike

I understand the comments about the QM FB page, and to an outsider reading it, the page does come across as very negative.

However, it is important to understand how different QM is now to when she arrived in Long Beach.  Many of the changes made in that initial conversion have had far reaching effects.  Sadly, the plans for the initial conversion and the final result were very different, and that has led to the confused layout which exists today.

Whilst it is true that Bill is very forthright in his views, he has an astonishing knowledge of the ship and more importantly he understands the logic of her original layout.  From the flow of the Prom Deck Lounges right through to the critical layout of the Working Alleyway that served the ship, he has taken the time to work out why she was designed in the way she was, and the damaging effect of the subsequent changes.

A substantial portion of QM is closed to the public.  Many of the second and third class lounges are either used for storage or not used at all.  Significant amounts of former crew space are gutted and used for storage.  Approximately 2/3 of the original machinery spaces are empty and unused.  All of this is valuable space which could and should be used to earn revenue for the ship.  The fact that the second and third class dining rooms are used for storage is a direct effect of the changes made to the lower decks when QM was converted post her arrival in LB.

We can sit back and say "yes its great she survived now stop complaining" or we can look at her and say "what is her potential"  During her years in LB, she has never made any significant level of profit, certainly not enough to cover the needed levels of maintenance and refurbishment.  The only way she will ever achieve that profit is if she is properly opened up and all of her spaces are used to their full revenue earning potential.  As she is, she can generate enough money to keep the lights on, replace the carpets every now and again, and put a new coat of paint on the funnels, but that is about it.  Each of her operators has stuck to the same approach, and each has eventually given up and walked away.

The fact that she has operated as a leasehold site during most of her time in LB means the operators have never had any real incentive to invest substantially in the ship.  All they will ever do is look to make minor changes here and there that will generate a bit of extra income.  So long as that continues, QM as she is today is all we will ever see.

For those who object to the QM FB page - and I do sympathise - take some time to read Bill's Alternate Visions website - and don't just read it superficially, take time to understand it - or better still walk the decks with Bill's plans printed out - and you will then really understand what has been lost, and more importantly what can be changed for the future.

Online cunardqueen

Quote
  I understand the comments about the QM FB page, and to an outsider reading it, the page does come across as very negative 
   I do think that in all honesty a lot of us are just seeing his posts on the FB page and thinking oh hes off on another rant, and l lm one of those guilty souls.


Quote
  Whilst it is true that Bill is very forthright in his views, he has an astonishing knowledge of the ship and more importantly he understands the logic of her original layout.  From the flow of the Prom Deck Lounges right through to the critical layout of the Working Alleyway that served the ship, he has taken the time to work out why she was designed in the way she was, and the damaging effect of the subsequent changes.

 
Dare we ask why any of the owners have never approached Bill for any form of help or some direction in where to go, Clearly he is a wealth of information.Perhaps he is too forthright?


Quote
For those who object to the QM FB page - and I do sympathise - take some time to read Bill's Alternate Visions website - and don't just read it superficially, take time to understand it - or better still walk the decks with Bill's plans printed out - and you will then really understand what has been lost, and more importantly what can be changed for the future.     

I must admit reading the recent bit about the Club QM it was or should be a very interesting project. and something to benefit the hotel guests, Iv always said that l think in order to really appreciate Queen Mary you need to stay over a night. Not only are you able to explore a bit more but it shows the ship in a whole new light after the day trippers have gone.

I cant help but think that if my first visit had only been as a day visitor what I would have thought of her. In fact so much so that my last visit on Xmas day for the brunch l do regret not staying over a night. Already in the past few visits iv notched up over a week onboard, and still not managed to see all that l want to see.

Theres still that certain something that grabs you when you walk into the lobby, suitcase in hand ready to stay over  ;D
Now the addition of the Afternoon tea its going to spoil or perhaps reduce what overnighters are able to eat, lm sure we couldnt do Afternoon tea AND  Dinner..... then again..if we did it on QE2..
From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!

Online mgmike

I understand that Bill has shared his AV website with former operators of the ship.  As far as I know the response has been positive, but the potential cost and the size of the commitment needed has prevented any progress.

The current method of operation of the ship - using the main public rooms as conference and banquet halls with stacking chairs - goes back to the Diners Club days in the early 1970's.  It was implemented as a quick, simple, easy and cheap method of using the main public rooms without any significant investment.  It is NOT what was originally planned for the ship in the LB conversion.  Each operator since then has followed exactly the same approach - maximise returns with minimum investment in changes.  As a leasehold site, the operators have no incentive at all to make major capital investment in the ship.  So long as the leasehold approach continues, I suspect there will be no major change to QM. 

It is unfortunate that the level of curatorial diligence shown at many historic sites is not displayed on board QM.  She needs a historical team with responsibility for cataloguing her furniture and fittings, storing them in an appropriate manner, and ensuring that changes made are done so in a sensitive and respectful manner.

Online Lynda Bradford

We had some discussion about the Inventory Report survey on this topic started by Stowaway2K

https://www.theqe2story.com/forum/index.php/topic,4088.0.html
I was proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
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Offline Hank Hargrove

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I understand that Bill has shared his AV website with former operators of the ship.  As far as I know the response has been positive, but the potential cost and the size of the commitment needed has prevented any progress.

The current method of operation of the ship - using the main public rooms as conference and banquet halls with stacking chairs - goes back to the Diners Club days in the early 1970's.  It was implemented as a quick, simple, easy and cheap method of using the main public rooms without any significant investment.  It is NOT what was originally planned for the ship in the LB conversion.  Each operator since then has followed exactly the same approach - maximise returns with minimum investment in changes.  As a leasehold site, the operators have no incentive at all to make major capital investment in the ship.  So long as the leasehold approach continues, I suspect there will be no major change to QM. 

It is unfortunate that the level of curatorial diligence shown at many historic sites is not displayed on board QM.  She needs a historical team with responsibility for cataloguing her furniture and fittings, storing them in an appropriate manner, and ensuring that changes made are done so in a sensitive and respectful manner.

To be honest, I think part of the problem is that the ship is misplaced and would fair better in a city with a large population (New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, London), or a city with historical connections (Southampton or Liverpool). The ship does earn something of a profit in LB, however it isn't nearly enough to do everything good for the Queen Mary. LB is certainly close to L.A. but is often bypassed and overlooked. The navy has been gone from there for years. It isn't famous for its beaches (ironic considering the name). Honestly, the Queen Mary is one of the only reasons tourists visit LB. I do think that the current operators do care for the ship, even if they are slightly misguided. I know they are doing surveys on the hull (40 years in a basin haven't been good to the bottom) and planning on replacing and repairing the side shell and the hull. As for the bottom, they will probably just have to encase it in concrete and carry out repairs from within. The nearest dry dock is in San Diego and it's feared chunks of the bottom will fall out so any repairs will need to be there. Sometimes I worry if the ship will be scrapped, but I think the ship's future is secure and it is popular. I pray for her, and at least the management is starting to step in the right direction.


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Offline Trevor Casey

Does anybody have a picture of the flooring?
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