Queen Elizabeth Review

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The Queen Elizabeth, which replaced her beloved predecessor, the QE2, spends the bulk of her year in Europe, sailing Eastern and Western Mediterranean, Baltic, and Norwegian coastal itineraries. Like her fleetmate Queen Victoria, she is designed more as a cruise ship than an ocean liner, but her interior still has echoes of nautical charm and reflects the best of the history of ocean cruising.

Although the deck plans for Queen Elizabeth appear to be nearly identical to her fleet mate Queen Victoria, make no mistake—this queen bears her own regal trappings. A successor to her namesake, the original Queen Elizabeth, which entered service in 1940, Cunard’s latest liner boasts touches of art deco that recall a time when the first queen ruled the waves. The newest Cunard ship to bear the name also recalls the QE2 via artwork and memorabilia and has its own nautically themed Yacht Club, named after the lively aft lounge on QE2.

Curved staircases, geometric patterns, and spectacular artwork grace the soaring Grand Lobby, which is overlooked by the two-tier Library—a calm, wood-paneled haven bathed in natural reading light and crowned with a leaded glass ceiling. As on her fleet mates, double- and triple-height spaces play a large part in defining the grand interiors; however, there’s still the warmth of an authentic British pub, a clubby cigar room, and lounges with intimate seating areas where you might feel you’ve stumbled into a high society event of the 1930s or 1940s.

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