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North East England
1,780 Posts
Joined Feb 2009
I will always remember my first sail away on QM2 in 2009. We were doing our first ever trip on the seas, a transatlantic to New York. Really pleased I chose one of the best, I just knew I had done the right thing. Just felt so at home on her, have done many sailings since then with Cunard mostly. In fact have booked a back to back transatlantic for June 2018.

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Sailed Celebrity Eclipse June 2015
Sailed QM2 B2B 20th August 2014
Sailed Queen Victoria 17th November 2013
Sailed QM2 Summer Getaway 5th June 2012
Sailed RCI Independence of the seas 11th November 2012
Sailed QE Spring Getaway 30th April 2011
Sailed QM2 Mediterranean Medley 19th September 2010
Sailed QM2 Summer Getaway 28th May 2010
Sailed QM2 Transatlantic Southampton to New Yoryk 26th September 2009
Bergen County, Northern New Jersey, USA
6,047 Posts
Joined Feb 2006
The best Cunard ( Carnival( Line ship trips have all been great as this fine line is always above most cruise lines and does not nickle and dime youall and all the time.

the Queen Mary 2 stands out as an Ocean Liner double hulled. We interviewd the Executive Chef a few times as well thje Kennel Master etc..

This fine line has some of the best food prepared on the seven seas. They even make canine cuisine aboard.

The first cruise a r/t and Kodak moments was great from/to NYC/NY. Only once it had to disemark in the old MOTBY in the City of Bayonne, Hudson County, New Jersey as Red Hook, Borough of Brooklyn, NYC, NY was already in tendering of another ship.
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truncated American born, bred, proud of it. Garden State growing. Cruise more miles on open water!We are Nautical eh..
1066 a.d William I.Again allied Flanders on ships with King Richard I won England / Scotland.Only I have documented from a.d. 241 so far.
Our N. American Family 1584-1587 Roanok Colony / Croatoan site, first English male child born in N.America, first Permanent Settlement on 05/14/1607 A.D. 2 of the 3 ships, Susan (Sarah) Constant & Godspeed building a fort at Jamestowne, Va.

A few years later also 8 more Kin Folk, aboard on the Dutch Liquor Ship, Mayflower 1621.

June 14th, a.d. 1646 our direct kinsman French first Grand Admiral Jean Armand de Maillé-Brézé killed at the Battle of Ortebello , at Sunset on his Flag Ship Grand Saint Louis . His dad was Marshall of France General Urbain de Maillé-Brézé married Miss Nicole du Plessis-Richelieu only sister of Cardinal Richelieu ...Armand Jean du Plessis, cardinal-duc de Richelieu et de Fronsac .

Site of the Battle ( Orbetello) of Isola del Giglio was near the Friday, a.d. Jan.13th 2012 17 Decked SHIP Costa Concordia Crashed (no deck 13) .
May GOD Bless US of America !
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I know we can/may all agree to disagree on cruising but provide learning opportunities for all.

Our Ocean current, Favorite's ( Favourite's) Cruise Lines are:Cunard/HAL

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Charlotte, NC
76 Posts
Joined Jan 2014
There has been something special about each of the times we have been on Cunard.

Our first crossing was April 2010, westbound on QM2. The whole trip was memorable, starting with U.K. Air space being closed when we were about a hour out from Heathrow, due to ash cloud from a volcano in Iceland (I am NOT going to try to spell it). We diverted to Brussels, so our planned weekend in London was spent trying get across the Channel. We made it.

The latest trip was a year ago November (overdue for another), again westbound on QM2. The sail away was on my birthday. The following night in the Princess Grill dining room, our waiter and the maitre d' brought a small birthday cake for our desert and made a general fuss - in a good way. Neither my wife nor I had said anything about it, so someone was paying attention to the passenger data.
9,482 Posts
Joined Apr 2010
Compliments to H.Hattie for starting a very interesting thread, and those who have replied.

Interesting reading, evocative of many memories.

San Francisco, CA
1,603 Posts
Joined Nov 2002
1) Taking the QE2 to Hawaii as she was deadheading to spend 6 months in Japan as a floating hotel offshore of Tokyo and Osaka(?) in 1989. She still had the 70s remodeled mod decor including the eye-popping midships lounge with go-go colors and white baby grand piano. Crew only sailed from Honolulu to Tokyo. Because they crossed the international dateline they missed Christmas, but because they were Brits, they celebrated Boxing Day.

2) Taking the QE2 through the Panama Canal on another holiday in 1997. Our first at sea day was Thanksgiving. What was cute was the decorations were done up by the British staff to celebrate the American holiday. What they came up with was red white and blue bunting and what looked like a 4th of July celebration (admittedly not a big UK holiday either). The turkey dinner was wonderful.

Also, on that trip, we scraped bottom while transiting the Gaillard Cut. We had been hanging with a group which included the boyfriend of the Mauritania Restaurant's Maitre d' - who had crossed from England to NY, done a canal transit to CA and was heading back. So, we were tied-into the gossip mill. Once we completed the transit, we anchored offshore and they shifted ballast to tilt the ship to make it easier for scuba divers to examine the damage - and certify things for the insurance companies. (...and BOY were the rumors flying in the hours we were anchored listing like they were serving Columbian coffee on the starboard side.) Ultimately, the damage was determined to be cosmetic and we were cleared to sail.

We also received an upgrade to Queen's Grill from Caronia. It was an all-time great cruise.

3) We joined the QE2 on a W. Med cruise in Rome/Civitavecchia to Southampton to say farewell to her in 2008 and transferred to the QM2 for a crossing home. This was also the occasion for the Queen to say farewell to the ship she had christened many years prior at a special luncheon aboard after our arrival at Southampton. The crew was all flustered and atwitter in the days preceding the luncheon to make sure everything was just perfect.

It was especially interesting watching in front of the terminal as we waited for our complimentary taxis to take us to the QM2 as there was a steady parade of black cars with all the swells arriving for lunch with the Queen (and the ladies' hats!)

4) Seeing the QM2 for the first time. She arrived in SF with great celebration in February 2007 as part of her world cruise. We traveled to the Wharf to see her and she was breathtaking, No one in town could talk of anything else that day. This was in spite of another fairly large event happening that day elsewhere, the Super Bowl. At the time, I turned to my husband and told him that we'd be on her next year.

And we were. And in a few weeks we'll be back on her for our fourth voyage.
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.Mark Katzenberger

Upcoming Queen Mary 2 - RT N Atlantic crossing - 2018, Queen Mary 2 - NY, Halifax, Boston - 2019, Golden Princess- Pacific Repo - 2019,
Eurodam - Pacific repo - 2018, Queen Mary 2 - RT crossing + Bruges - 2017, Queen Mary 2 - N Atlantic crossing - 2016,
Celebrity Infinity
- S. America - 2015, Star Princess - Pacific repo - 2015, AMACello - Rhine - 2013,
Norwegian Spirit - W Caribbean - 2011, Crystal Serenity - E Med - 2010, Queen Mary 2 - Canada - 2009,
Eurodam - Baltics - 2009, Queen Mary 2 - N Atlantic crossing - 2008, Queen Elizabeth 2 - W Med - 2008,
Amsterdam - Alaska - 2007, Norwegian Sun - W Caribbean - 2007, Voyager of the Seas - Bermuda - 2005,
Star Princess - Mexico - 2002, Carnival Spirit - Pacific repo - 2001, Norwegian Majesty - S Caribbean - 2001,
Rembrandt - Canada - 2000, Seabourn Sun - SF cruise to nowhere - 2000, Queen Elizabeth 2 - N Atlantic crossing - 1999,
Zenith - Bermuda - 1998, Queen Elizabeth 2 - Panama Canal - 1997, Celebrity Century - W Caribbean - 1996,
Nieuw Amsterdam - Alaska - 1993, Nieuw Amsterdam - Pacific repo - 1993, Crown Princess - E Caribbean - 1991,
Westerdam - Mexico repo - 1990, Queen Elizabeth 2 - Hawaii - 1989, Cunard Princess - Pacific repo - 1987
San Francisco, CA
1,603 Posts
Joined Nov 2002
Other treasured Cunard memories
  • On our Hawaii trip on the QE2, talking to a singer at the crew bar (the Pig) and hearing how on that night's show, a tribute to Andrew Lloyd Webber, when they did the Starlight Express number, wearing roller skates, they'd launch off from the corners of the dance floor (this was the old setup before there was a proscenium of sorts) ...and wherever they ended up on nights like ours mid-Pacific, they'd "ta daa" act as if that was what was intended. Of course in my mind's eye, this is accompanied by "JAZZ HANDS!"
  • On our canal transit on the QE2, hearing the crew talk about how the year before, Princess Diana had confounded her handlers by demanding to join the crew in the most down-and-dirty, no-officers crew bar, the aforementioned Pig. And how, to a person, they treasured her acknowledgement. It was less than a year later that she died and I kept thinking of the crew that weekend. (They were doing their annual Newport Jazz Festival cruise)
  • On our 2008 crossing on the QM2, I needed to compose some long-overdue letters to express deep gratitude to special people, following my mother's death. I took an hour each afternoon to curl up in the deep leather chairs or quiet window nooks in the library to gather my thoughts and put them on paper through my quiet tears. It was a refuge I needed and will forever be grateful for.
328 Posts
Joined Jan 2012
I guess I have three really memorable experiences:

1. Our first ever cruise to the Norwegian Fjords on QM2 in the summer of 2009. I honestly couldn't believe how glamorous the ship was. As it was going to be a "one off" I hired all my formal outfits - now I own more formal outfits than day dresses.

2. Our best ever voyage was a transatlantic back to back in 2010 - booked whilst on our Norwegian Fjords cruise. Sailing into New York was something I'd always dreamed of as a child so it really was a dream come true. We're not really City people and were surprised at how impressed we were with New York - it was much cleaner and much quieter than we had anticipated and 8 hours simply wasn't long enough - and so, at some point in the future, we plan to spend a week there. On the transatlantic we especially loved the diverse mix of people and the multitude of things to do on all the sea days. We have friends who did a transatlantic and bitched that all there was to see was sea!!!!!!

3. In 2014 we booked a mini cruise on QE - 3 nights - for my birthday and thought that, as a treat, we'd book Britannia Club to, primarily, try out the anytime dining - we've only ever booked Britannia before - and the upgrade fairy visited us and upgraded us to a Q4. We absolutely loved the spaciousness of the suite, and the menu choices in Queens Grill were fairly special too.
4,505 Posts
Joined Apr 2002
Two stand out:

1. Our first eastbound crossing and our first view of the QM2 up close. Seeing the iconic bow and colors thrilled me, and still does each time I see her!

2. Leaving Hamburg on the anniversary of the QM2's first Hamburg departure, there was a HUGE celebration with an accompanying boat parade, fireworks, waters cannons, hundreds of people lining the shore waving flags and signs, music blaring, and all of the ship on our balconies or out on deck waving flags and shouting right back. Incredible experience!

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Oslo, Norway
911 Posts
Joined Oct 2001
1) First TA on QE2 in December 2002. It was very rough for a couple of days, nevertheless I enjoyed the whole crossing a lot. Very social fun loving crowd on board.
2) Last QE2 Westbound in October 2008. This was very special occasion in tandem with QM2. We changed to the QM2 on the way back to Southampton
3) Having a single Queen Grill stateroom on a short QE2 weekender on October 2006. It all felt very exclusive!
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  • QM2 Westbound Transatlantic Sept 2016
  • Celestial Olympia Aegean Sea March 2016
  • Richard With (Hurtigruten) Bergen to Trondheim Aug 2015
  • Trollfjord (Hurtigruten) Bodø -Kirkenes Sep 10
  • Eurodam Aruba /Curacao (RSVP) Feb 2010
  • Nautica (Oceania) Black Sea Aug 2009
  • Eurodam Eastern Caribbean (RSVP) Feb 2009
  • QM2 Tandem Eastbound Transatlantic with QE2 Oct 2008
  • QE2 Last Westbound Transatlantic Oct 2008
  • Finnmarken (Hurtigruten) Trondheim-Bergen Sep 08
  • Zuiderdam Western Caribbean (RSVP) Feb 2008
  • Century Western Med Oct 2007
  • QE2 Channel cruise Oct 2006
  • Richard With (Hurtigruten) Tromsø-Bergen Sept 2006
  • Richard With (Hurtigruten) Ålesund-Tromsø May 2006
  • Brilliance of the Seas Med (Atlantis charter) Sep 2005
  • QE2 Norwegian Fjords June 2005
  • Kong Harald (Hurtigruten) Aug 2003 Trondheim - Bergen
  • Maasdam Eastern Caribbean Mar 2003
  • QE2 Westbound Transatlantic Dec 2002
  • Olympic Voyager Eastern Med Oct 2001
  • Arcadia (P&O) Caribbean/Panama Dec 2000
  • Oriana (P&O) Eastern Med Nov 1999
  • Jubilee Mex Riviera Oct 1991
  • Royal Princess Amsterdam-Tilbury August 1990
  • Royal & Island Princess Purser's Desk Crew1988-89
Bawlmer, Merlin, America's Most Twisted City
375 Posts
Joined Nov 2006
Crossing the Atlantic from New York to Southampton in early June 1989 I met a wonderful man...We have been together ever since and on our way to another line's ship this June we will have our 28th Anniversary aboard the QM2, our 6th trip in her (7th will be our Jul 21 return. In between 1989 and now we have sailed in dozens of shipsof many lines including the QE2 across the Atlantic and once around the world, SEA GODDESS I, ROYAL VIKING SUN, QUEEN VICTORIA (where we spent a month in 2011 we both try to forget)...He missed sailing with me in the SAGAFJORD but did get two VISTAFJORD crossings with me. I think there were some other Cunard sailings we did together but as we age and I have sailed in over 115 ships they are beginning to elide in my memory - except the ones we didn't like and the few we just LOVED!
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The decks can be slippery when wet so always wear sensible shoes.

After having sailed in over 118 different ships on I don't know how many cruises as a passenger - hate the term "GUEST" because I pay for the privilege to sail - and I still sail.


Vale of Glamorgan
4,745 Posts
Joined Aug 2007
What a lovely story, happy anniversary.
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Email - [email protected]

If contacting me via email, please include your Cruise Critic user name and be patient, I do not have full time access to this mailbox and I am in a different time zone to many of you !
283 Posts
Joined May 2004
2 memories stand out -
First, our second voyage on the QM2 , westbound, having travelled eastbound the year before - walking into the Princess Grill to be greeted by name, shown to the same table as the previous year and with same waiter ( who remembered all our preferences!)
Second - sailing into Venice last September at dawn on the QV, having enjoyed an outstanding cruise from Athens.
Chengdu - PRC
50 Posts
Joined Oct 2014
For me the three best sailings are

1) The first sailing on QM2 from New York to Southampton in 2014, it was the best way to finish a three week trip around the world
2) Leaving Hamburg on QM2 in October 2015 with the fireworks celebrating her 50th visit to the city and looking down on the fireworks with the singing from the hotels on the riverbanks and
3) The face on my niece (7 years old) when we asked if she wanted to go on the QM2 to look after my parents as they 'might be scared' on the big ship
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Bawlmer, Merlin, America's Most Twisted City
375 Posts
Joined Nov 2006
Originally posted by Host Hattie
What a lovely story, happy anniversary.
thanks so much, Host Hattie!
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The decks can be slippery when wet so always wear sensible shoes.

After having sailed in over 118 different ships on I don't know how many cruises as a passenger - hate the term "GUEST" because I pay for the privilege to sail - and I still sail.


465 Posts
Joined Dec 2005
Afternoon tea is an absolute pleasure for me even sailing as a solo. The ability to sit back and read a good book while consuming gallons of tea and several scones is wonderful, and something I hope Cunard never changes. I don't want to be one of those old cruisers who sits in his nursing home lamenting that "I remember when Cunard used to serve afternoon tea to every guest, every single guest mind you" while conversing with the nearest hat and coat stand.
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1,858 Posts
Joined Mar 2010
My best Cunard memory is undoubtedly our first voyage on the QM2 and in fact our first ocean voyage on any ship. That was the eastbound crossing November 1-6, 2005, back in the days when the QM2 did six-day crossings and departed from Manhattan.

The last formal night of that voyage was November 5 (which unbeknownst to me as an American happened to be Bonfire Night in the UK). Just before dinner that evening I proposed to the future Mrs. Bluemarble. As she was finishing up getting ready for dinner, I got down on my knees and handed her a jewelry box containing her engagement ring, telling her it was “something to compete her outfit for the evening”. When she saw what was inside she was speechless at first, but when I then “popped the question” her reply was an emphatic “Yes!”.

We have since followed up with crossings that have included November 5 in both 2010 and 2015 for the fifth and tenth anniversaries of our engagement (as well as several other Cunard voyages along the way). If the schedule works out, we plan on another voyage on the QM2 in November, 2020 for the fifteenth anniversary of that evening. And even though we are Americans, we now have a special appreciation for Bonfire Night.

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"There’s nothing―absolutely nothing―half so much worth doing as messing about in boats." ― Kenneth Grahame, The Wind In The Willows

CroisiEurope Douce France, Rhine River (2004) ... Queen Mary 2, Transatlantic (2005, 2010, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2018) ... Queen Elizabeth 2, Norwegian Wonders (2008) ... Island Princess, Panama Canal (2008) ... Queen Victoria, Gallic Getaway (2009) ... Norwegian Epic, Eastern Caribbean (2010) ... Brilliance of the Seas, Suez Canal (2011) ... Queen Elizabeth, Eastern Mediterranean (2012) ... Maasdam, Canada and New England (2013) ... Queen Mary 2, Caribbean Fiesta (2013) ... Serenade of the Seas, Baltic (2017) ... Queen Mary 2, Norway Fjords (2018)

69 Posts
Joined Feb 2010
Our first ever cruise on QE2 in 2004 for my 50th birthday, by day two I was well and truly hooked! Since then the pleasure of meeting up with members of the crew who have become friends. Remember walking past the Britannia Restaurant on the first day once to be greeted by the maitre d' with wide open arms! The sail ins and outs from Venice, a sight you never forget! So many fabulous experiences

Brooklyn, NY, USA
893 Posts
Joined Mar 2009
The one special experience we will always remember was one Caribbean Cruise.

It was the year Cunard was introducing the Queen Victoria being added to the Fleet.

The Female CEO at the time (I forgot her name) was sailing with us and was giving a presentation about the Ship. Also that trip was the first time the the QM2 was sailing into St Thomas's Crown Bay Pier. What a welcome we received upon docking. Music, Island Dances etc...beautiful.

After talking to her several times in passing while onboard we received a special honor. An invitation to the her table along with the Captain for Dinner. What an experience. There were about 12 of us dining and very interesting conversations and meeting other passengers.

What an honor to experience,
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Luv Cruising,
BklynBoy8 "Eddie"
Cunard WC - Diamond Member
Booked....QM2 - 7 Day Canada/NE Jun 30th - Jul 7th, 2019 (Independence Day Sailing)
including the Port of Newport, Rhode Island

Sailed in the Past - Cunard, HAL and Chandris Lines
(QE2, QM2, Caronia, Rotterdam, Qx Anna Maria & Ellis)
993 Posts
Joined Jul 2009
My only Cunard cruise was traveling solo on a WV on the QV. A few weeks into the trip I felt under the weather and did not go down for dinner. About 20 minutes after dinner started, my cabin phone rang. It was my head waiter checking to make sure I was OK. After I told him I was not coming down, he offered to have my dinner sent up.

It was nice to know that even traveling alone, people noticed when your not there.