Sneak Peek: Cunard's Fabulous Queen Mary 2 Refurbishment
Photo courtesy of Cunard
All guests, canines and felines included, will be pampered in renewed style onboard Cunard’s Queen Mary 2 when she emerges from drydock in 2016 with redesigned staterooms, suites, public spaces and art deco interior homages to the original Queen Mary. The genuine ocean liner is scheduled for an extensive 25-day renovation at the Blohm + Voss Shipyard in Hamburg, Germany from May 27 to June 21.
Having experienced the ship firsthand, I can say she was already a gem (in need of some polish sure – extensive seagoing journeys make maintenance in port infrequent), and now the vessel is set to make a splash once more. We’ve gathered all the videos and renderings previewing the enhancements below.
Staterooms and Suites
The newest addition to the Queen Mary 2 for accommodations will be 15 added Britannia Single staterooms, in line with those recently introduced on the Queen Elizabeth and Queen Victoria, facilitating growing demand from those traveling solo. Also, half of the Britannia Balcony staterooms will be refurbished during the drydock with all remaining Britannia staterooms set for enhancement over 2016 and 2017.
With exclusive access to the Britannia Club restaurant, to be expanded in capacity, all Britannia Club balcony staterooms will be redesigned, and another 30 will be built. Not to be overshadowed, dog and cat accommodations will even see the addition of ten more kennels onboard.
Luxuriously, all 172 famed Grill Suites will be rearranged to maximize space and feature a new decor, again taking cues from the original Queen Mary. Accompanying Grill restaurants – only available for a la carte breakfasts, lunches and dinners to those booked in suites, Princess Grill Suites at the Princess Grill and Queens Grill Suites at the Queens Grill – will also be redesigned and reconfigured.
The existing Winter Garden will be converted into the Carinthia Lounge, inspired by the line’s namesake ships. The new venue will serve as an elegant cafe with light breakfast and lunch offerings and a pastry counter, as well as specialty coffees and teas, including a champagne afternoon tea time. By night, it will set the scene for live entertainment and wine drinking. The space was already nicely decked out, so these improvements will make it only more inviting.
Receiving a major overhaul is the King’s Court buffet with a dramatically rearranged service area that looks to connect the separate service sides through the center of the ship for improved traffic flow. As the most tired existing venue, this redesign is a welcome change, complete with a brightly refreshed decor, pre-set tables and waiter-served beverages. Italian, Indian, Pan Asian and Tex Mex will be the featured rotating cuisines, and the new counters will even service cooking demos. The Chef’s Galley section, serving pasta and pizza at lunch, will also offer a Chef’s Table tasting menu hosted by the executive chef on certain nights of the cruise.
Lastly, with Cunard’s partnership with Todd English drawing to a close, his signature restaurant will be replaced (while food was very good here, there’s potential for better dining) with the Verandah, following that on the Queen Elizabeth and Queen Victoria and reminiscent of the Verandah Grill on the first Queen Mary. The specialty restaurant and bar will showcase French cuisine and seasonal menus and ingredients for lunch and dinner. Plus, table-side theater will be featured.
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