Cunard Cruises

Cunard Cruises

Cunard is the probably most historic cruise line in the world. Her heritage dates back to 1839 when Canadian-born Samuel Cunard was awarded the first British transatlantic steamship mail contract and for most of the next 30 years Cunarders held the coveted Blue Riband for the fastest Atlantic voyage.

Since 1939 Cunard has had hundreds of prestigious cruise liners including the Mauretania (launched 1906) her sister ship Lusitania (also 1906) which was torpedoed by a German U-boat on 7 May 1915 with a loss of 1,198 lives. The sinking was instrumental in bringing the United States into the First World War.

Later in the 1930's the world renowned Queen Mary and Queen Elizabeth were launched which during the Second World War were used as troopships carrying over 1 million troops and covering over 1 million miles. According to Sir Winston Churchill the two ships plaid an integral part in helping to shorten the war by at least a year.

The introduction of passenger jet airlines such as the Boeing 707 made it increasingly difficult for transatlantic passenger ships to remain profitable so Cunard withdrew from its year round service to concentrate on passenger cruise summer holidays across the Atlantic.

The Queen Mary and Queen Elizabeth were replaced in 1969 by the new Flagship of the fleet The Queen Elizabeth 2 fondly referred to as simply "The QE2". She had no identical sister ship or running mate and never ran a year-round weekly transatlantic express service to New York, however the QE2 did continue the Cunard tradition of regular scheduled transatlantic crossings every year of her service life. QE2 retired from active Cunard service on 27 November 2008, where it was planned for her to begin conversion to a floating hotel which would have seen her eventually be moored at Palm Jumeirah, Dubai. However she remains moored at Port Rashid awaiting an uncertain future.


Queen Mary 2 Queen Mary 2

The Queen Mary 2 is the flagship of the Cunard Line. At the time of her construction in 2003 by Chantiers de l'Atlantique, Queen Mary 2 was the longest, widest and tallest passenger ship ever built, and with her gross tonnage (GT) of 148,528 tons, was also the largest. She no longer holds this distinction after the construction of Royal Caribbean International's 154,407 GT Freedom of the Seas in April 2006, and the same company's 225,282 GT Oasis of the Seas in October 2009. However, Queen Mary 2 remains the largest ocean liner (as opposed to cruise ship) ever built, although the ship is often used for cruising, including an annual world cruise. Queen Mary 2 was the first major ocean liner built since the Queen Elizabeth 2 in 1969. The ship was named by Queen Elizabeth II in 2004 after the first RMS Queen Mary, completed in 1936. The Queen Mary was in turn named after Mary of Teck, wife of King George V.

Queen Mary 2's facilities include 15 restaurants and bars, five swimming pools, a casino, a ballroom, a theatre, and the first planetarium at sea. There are also kennels onboard, as well as a nursery. Queen Mary 2 is one of the few ships afloat to have remnants of a class system onboard, most prominently seen in her dining options.

The ship was intended primarily to cross the Atlantic ocean, and was therefore designed differently to many cruise ships. She has a maximum speed of 29.62 knots (54.86 km/h; 34.09 mph) and a cruising speed of 26 knots (48 km/h; 30 mph), much faster than most other passenger ships, such as Oasis of the Seas, which has a cruising speed of 22.6 knots (41.9 km/h; 26.0 mph).
MS Queen Victoria MS Queen Victoria

MS Queen Victoria (QV) is a cruise ship in the Cunard Line fleet, named after Queen Victoria.

The Queen Victoria is of the same basic design as other Vista class passenger vessels, though slightly longer and more in keeping with Cunard's interior style. At 90,000 gross tons, she is the second largest Cunard ship ever built, after the RMS Queen Mary 2. The QV's facilities include seven restaurants, thirteen bars, three swimming pools, a ballroom, and a theatre.

The Queen Victoria is the running mate to the Queen Mary 2 and, in the future, the new Queen Elizabeth. Until November 2008, she also operated alongside Queen Elizabeth 2.


On Queen Victoria, over two thirds of the staterooms have private balconies to catch the sea breeze. Upholding the classic tradition at sea, your choice of accommodation is matched to your dining style. Luxuriate in sumptuous Queens Grill and Princess Grill suites with marble bathrooms and butler service in the highest categories.

Standard Amenities:
  • Complimentary 24-hour room service
  • Interactive TV with multi language film and music channels
  • Direct-Dial telephone
  • Refrigerator, safe and hair dryer
  • Soft Terry Robes & slippers
  • Nightly turndown service with pillow chocolate
  • Daily shipboard newspaper

Exclusive Queens Grill Amenities:
  • Priority embarkation and luggage delivery
  • Pillow concierge (a selection of pillows and duvets to suit your preference)
  • Daily fresh fruit
  • Bon Voyage bottle of Champagne and strawberries on embarkation
  • Butler and concierge service
  • Personalised stationery, atlas and books
  • Complimentary bottled water
  • Access to Queens Lounge and private deck area
  • Single-seating dining in the Queens Grill
  • In-suite dining
  • Complimentary broadsheet newspaper
  • Flower arrangement in stateroom
  • Board games and computer games console
  • Bar stocked with spirits, wines and soft drinks
MS Queen Elizabeth MS Queen Elizabeth

Cunard's newest arrival Queen Elizabeth recalls the rich heritage of the first Cunarder to bear the name, her elegance both echoes that legendary age and enhances her luxurious modern allure.

MS Queen Elizabeth is, currently being built by Italian shipbuilder Fincantieri at its Monfalcone shipyard. On her delivery in September 2010, Queen Elizabeth will operate as a sister ship to MS Queen Victoria. Her design has been modified from previous Vista-class vessels, meaning that she will be slightly larger than her sister at 92,000 gross tons, largely due to a more vertical stern. Capable of carrying up to 2,092 passengers, she will be the second largest Cunard ship ever built, after Queen Mary 2.

The name of the ship was announced by Cunard on 10 October 2007, so that the company would have three vessels once again after the retirement of the QE2.

The naming of the ship as Queen Elizabeth will see a situation similar to that between 1940 and 1948 - during those years, Cunard's original Queen Elizabeth was in service at the same time as the Royal Navy battleship Queen Elizabeth. In 2014, four years after this ship joins the fleet, the Royal Navy plan to introduce into service the new aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth.

It was announced by Cunard that her first commanding officer will be Captain Chris Wells.


The Queen Elizabeth design will evoke the era of the 1930s, in which Cunard's first Queen Elizabeth was launched, with many art deco interior touches, 71% of the staterooms have balconies so you can catch the sea breeze. The sumptuous Queens Grill and Princess Grill suites have marble bathrooms and butler service in the highest categories.

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