In 2019, Wayne and I took a trip to Europe with our dear friends, Tess and Donald. Because I have a love of all things Art Deco and because, well, it’s a freaking OCEAN LINER, we decided to take the Queen Mary 2 across. Because we desperately needed some downtime from work and life, we completely unplugged the entire voyage. And, since I wasn’t carrying around my phone, we don’t have a ton of pictures. One morning, Wayne got up crazy early to get some pictures of the ship, so it looks like we were the only people on the ship! But OMZ the Art Deco! :::swoons:::
Some notable differences between a Cunard ocean liner and other cruises:
- The service – While we didn’t actually have the place to ourselves, QM2 does not feel crowded like a cruise ship.
- The decor and general upkeep – Art Deco gorgeous! I may have to redecorate my entire house now. #inspired
- Activities – Some of what we did: watercolor painting lessons, fencing lessons, participated in a fashion show, had proper afternoon tea, enjoyed a book club, indulged in the Godiva lounge, sampled port flights, went ballroom dancing (well, watching really – everyone was so good!)
- PLUS: The spa, the pool, and (yes, it really has one) the planetarium.
- A whole new meaning to “formal night” – There are parts of the ship (basically all but one deck) you’re not allowed to enter on formal nights if you don’t have the proper attire. They’re not joking.
- Entertainment – With the exception of one (omg they were really really bad) singing duo, the entertainment was great. I don’t recall other cruises having guest lectures.
- Alcohol – or lack thereof. One of the things I hate most about a Carnival cruise? Drunk people. Not on QM2. While most do enjoy a snifter of brandy or a martini after dinner, getting drunk would simply be gauche.
- The Roaring 20s:
Would we have changed anything? Not much.
- We went from NYC to Southampton on the first week of our trip. We all agree if (when) we go again, we would take the Southampton to NYC direction after visiting Europe, instead. Going from west to east, you lose an hour each day. Plus, Wayne and I were spent two weeks in Europe after the week-long voyage. We could have used the rest on the way home! And going east to west, we’d have one hour added each day; thus, we would have skipped the jet leg completely.
- Spend more girl time!! Tess and I were overly (unnecessarily) concerned about our husbands getting bored and didn’t get to spend that much time just the two of us. The first thing we wanted to do when we got back was plan our next girlfriends’ cruise (no offense, boys)!
- Select the second seating – We had the first seating, and with the formal nights, I had to be in the salon by around 3 PM to be ready for dinner. That really cuts into the day.
If you’re considering a transatlantic, and you’re not going all out for a Royal or Grand Duplex Queens Grills suite, I recommend a standard balcony room at the Britannia level. We were on the fence about Britannia club or Princess Grills, but the food is all the same and the service at all levels is white glove.