The world renowned Cunard Queen Elizabeth departed from the Blohm & Voss Shipyard in Hamburg earlier this month. It was docked in the shipyard for the first renovations since the ship was launched in 2010. In addition to standard safety and maintenance checks, the 2100-passenger ship has had a vast amount of work performed on it in order to improve its quality in both accommodation and dining.
She certainly has been spruced up in preparation for her 175th Anniversary celebration of Cunard’s operation and is scheduled to meet up with her sisters, the Queen Mary II and Queen Victoria in Liverpool on the 24th of May 2015.
Something new and more enhancements
The exciting news in the multi-million pound retrofit was that the renovations were in response to passenger’s demand and the changing demographics of cruisers. Angus Struthers, Cunard’s Marketing Director, said: “Whilst there has been investment across the ship, we are particularly delighted to announce that following this refit, there will be staterooms for single travellers on board a Cunard ship for the first time since QE2.”
Single passengers now have the option to book a ‘cabin for one’ for the first time. A total of nine modern and single passenger mid-ship staterooms were created on Deck 2. The casino was reconfigured and eight cabins are designated as Ocean View single staterooms, whilst the ninth will be an inside cabin.
Cunard have also added a considerably larger amount of amenities in the staterooms and have enhanced the overall stateroom experience. All of the cabins onboard the ship have had new carpet installed as well as oversized flat screen televisions installed of mostly 32” or above.
Casual dining enhancements
In the informal Lido restaurant, several enhancements were made to those who favour a more casual dining experience. One of these changes includes having the waiting staff serve coffee and tea at the tables. The area is not only improved aesthetically but the self service area has been redesigned to eliminate long queues and flow better whilst obtaining a meal or snack.
Another change is the instalment of sun awnings in the open area adjacent to the Lido Pool as well as both sides near the top of the ship at the Grills Upper Terrace. The welcome shade will be appreciated by passengers when cruising in hotter climates.
In terms of entertainment, the photography section of the ship was vastly overhauled. The recently updated studio there will allow the professional photographers onboard to offer high quality portraits. The new touch screens in the photo gallery will allow visitors to find their pictures in no time.
The shopping complex was also slightly changed with the layout and lighting being redesigned as well as the addition of fine jewellery and watch shops.
In a boost to Cunard’s environmental image, scrubbers were also added to reduce the air pollution from the ship. This involved a new filtration system installed for the exhaust gas from the ship’s engines.
The balance of the ship will remain as elegant as before including the Canyon Ranch Spa®, entertainment and its enrichment programmes.
Queen Elizabeth left dry dock on the 1st of June and headed to Southampton in preparation for her planned sailings. She then went on her way to the Mediterranean to begin her Fly-Cruise programme for the duration of 2014.
She will begin her yearly 112 Day World voyage on the 10th of January 2015 out of Southampton. Segments of the World Cruise can be booked for example the 8 day transatlantic crossing to New York City and the 21 days from there to the Caribbean and Bahamas.
Written by Veronica Shine