Queen Mary 2 in Melbourne

While the Queen Mary 2 was in Melbourne I was lucky enough to enjoy lunch and a walk around on this lovely ship. The first impression is the size of the ship. At 151,400 tons and  nearly four football fields in length it is an imposing ship. When walking onboard it is like stepping back in time. Cunard, the owner of Queen Mary 2, is aiming to bring back the classic age of cruising back. Highlights of a cruise onboard include afternoon tea served in the Queens Room, the Royal Court Theatre, where you can enjoy nightly Broadway style shows and dining in one of the restaurants onboard. Each cruise includes a number of formal nights when you get to dress up in black tie.

Queen Mary 2‘s facilities include fifteen restaurants and bars, five swimming pools, a casino, a ballroom, a theatre, and the first planetarium at sea. There are also kennels on board, as well as a nursery.

Visit www.cruiseoffers.com.au for the latest cruise deals and itineraries

Queen Elizabeth Maiden Voyage

Sandra and I have just returned to the new Cunard liner, Queen Elizabeth, after attending the naming ceremony at Ocean Terminal in Southampton, UK.

The new Queen Elizabeth was named by HRH Queen Elizabeth in an impressive ceremony late on a sunny Monday afternoon. Almost 2000 guests from all over the world cheered as the Queen released a bottle of champagne which hit the ship with a loud bang and set of fireworks and a celebratory display of streamers. During the ceremony we were entertained by the massed bands of the Coldstream Guards and Scots Guards with the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra and the Bournemouth Symphony Chorus. Lesley Garrett, Britain’s most popular soprano sang, had everybody on their feet as she sang Amazing Grace. It was a great British event!

Queen Elizabeth is sister ship to Cunard’s Queen Victoria with gross tonnage of 90,000 tons, passenger capacity of 2068 and 1005 crew. The decoration is more subdued that Queen Victoria with a concentration on mellow timber colours. The aft sun deck and pool area has been enlarged, a Midships bar has been added on Deck 3, and the popular Cafe Carinthia has been extended. The Queen’s Room remains the central focus of the ship. The Queen checked out a gold bust of herself and a specially commissioned portrait in the Queen’ Room this afternoon Queen Elizabeth sets sail tomorrow on her maiden cruise to the Canary Islands. She will land in Australian ports in February 2011 during her first world cruise. She will deliver a wonderfully elegant travel experience to everybody who loves the Cunard style of cruising.

Filed by Travelrite International’s Neville Walliss from Queen Elizabeth in port at Southampton, Monday 11 October 2010.

Travelrite have a range of specials Queen Elizabeth escorted cruises sailing from Australia. Visit  http://www.travelrite.com.au/escorted_cruises.shtml for details.