The newest of the Cunard ships, the Queen Elizabeth successfully combines beloved ocean liner traditions with modern cruise innovations. With elegant chandeliers, Art Deco interiors, and light classical music in the public spaces, she creates an atmosphere of traditional luxury hearkening back to the Golden Age of maritime travel. Memorabilia from her predecessor ships decorates the lounges and halls, and a strict dedication to traditions like ballroom dancing and afternoon tea add to the authentic historical experience. The ship embraces nostalgia for days gone by.
But look closely and you'll notice the modern touches that create a cruise experience that matches today's standards of comfort and convenience. The staterooms are significantly larger than those of traditional ocean liners, and nearly three-quarters of them have balconies. Dining rooms are still assigned based on accommodation class, but the main dining room, the Britannia Restaurant, features flexible open seating and two dining times. And the dress code on board has been slightly relaxed to reflect modern travel trends.
Experience understated luxury in the staterooms of the Queen Elizabeth. Decorated in calming beige and golden hues, the staterooms give off an air of simplicity and refinement. Every stateroom comes with a refrigerator, a flat-screen TV, complimentary bath robe and slippers, and a welcome bottle of sparkling wine. These thoughtful amenities will make you feel right at home from your very first night.
Interior staterooms start at 152 square feet, and oceanview staterooms range from 180 to 200 square feet. Upgrade to a suite for more space as well as access to exclusive privileges and luxuries: Princess Grill suite passengers can enjoy a luxurious tiled bathroom with a bathtub, a spacious private balcony, and access to exclusive areas of the ship, including the Courtyard, the Grills Lounge and the Grills Terrace. Queens Grill suite passengers can additionally enjoy a personal butler and 24-hour room service, complimentary in-suite dining, complimentary drinks from their own private mini-bar, and pre-dinner canapes every night. There are also a limited number of single cabins where solo travelers can book a stateroom for themselves at no extra cost.
Choose your stateroom carefully, because the class of stateroom you select determines the dining options available to you.
Dining & Gastronomy
Cunard prides itself on its traditional style of cruising that hearkens back to its roots as a global shipping company, and this is reflected in the tiered system of its dining. The Queen Elizabeth has four main dining venues, which are assigned based on stateroom class. Most passengers dine in the Britannia Restaurant, an exquisite, two-story dining room that serves three meals a day. Exclusive restaurants are available for Britannia Club, Princess Grill and Queen Grill passengers, with the level of service and variety of menu items increasing with each tier. Expect a variety of European and especially British fare, including soups, salads, and imaginative meat or veggie-based entrees.
The star of the show, the Verandah, is the Queen Elizabeth's only specialty restaurant and is available to all cruise passengers for lunch and dinner. A true luxury dining venue, the Verandah features outstanding décor, artfully-prepared dishes, and an impeccable level of service. Other dining venues nod to the cruise line's British heritage: the Golden Lion pub serves traditional British pub fare like fish and chips or bangers and mash. The Lido buffet serves light pastries and fruit in the morning as well as full British breakfast fare. And the Queen's Room hosts the traditional afternoon tea, where guests can enjoy warm beverages and scones served by a white-gloved waiter and to the sounds of a classical orchestra.
Entertainment and Activities
The highlight of the entertainment on the Queen Elizabeth cruise ship is the music and dancing. Live music permeates the ship from aft to bow, from relaxing piano music to a harpist lightly strumming in the background to a classical string quartet that accompanies afternoon tea. Ballroom dancing in the extravagant Queens Room is a popular evening activity, and dancing lessons are of course included. Longer cruises often feature Royal Night themed balls, where passengers can don their finest attire and enjoy a night of formal dancing in an atmosphere that is utterly refined. Another must-have experience on the Queen Elizabeth is a show in the Royal Court Theatre, a grand performance venue featuring a wide variety of talented singers and dancers. Guests can book a V.I.P. box to guarantee the best seats and have a truly sophisticated experience.
Those looking for a more casual night out may enjoy an evening in the Red Lion pub, the perfect place for a cheery pint. Live sports and pub quizzes feature heavily in the evening entertainment, and the bar also serves snacks and casual pub food throughout the day. Other onboard activities include a sports program, a spa, and educational workshops and lectures. Children's activities and a teen zone cater to the cruise line's youngest passengers, with supervised activities for children ages six months to 17 years.
Cunard Line prides itself on having a more formal dress code than other cruise lines. Passengers tend to take the dress code very seriously, and a higher proportion dress up on Formal Nights than on other lines. The daytime dress code is informal, though is still a bit more smart compared to regular resort wear. On regular nights, men typically wear a suit with a jacket, though the tie is optional. Women typically wear a dress, skirt or nice pants with a formal top. On Formal Nights, the sky is the limit. This is the opportunity to dust off that tux and break out your finest gown. Cunard guests take the dress code very seriously and tend to go all-out. For those who do not wish to partake in the festivities, the Lido buffet maintains a casual dress code at all times of day.