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Queen Victoria - Cunard Line - cruise ship review and photos

When Queen Victoria was ordered, Cunard promised us "grandeur" and old-world public rooms. They fulfilled their promise in the exquisite Royal Arcade and the Queen's Room. The latter is a double-decked ballroom that is quite unique on the high seas.  

Queens Room Queens Room
Queens Room   Queens Room

First, there is the magnificent inlaid wooden dance floor, lighted by a gorgeous crystal chandeliers. This is the place for High Tea, Dinner Dances and Ballroom Blitzes.

Queens Room
Queens Room

The layout of the Queens Room is intriguing. The lower (deck 2) level is vast and is divided in a ballroom section and a less interesting "Queens Arcade". But it is on deck 3 that the room gets really interesting. 

Queens Arcade Queens Room
Queens Arcade   Queens Room!

Deck 3 happens to be the Promenade Deck, but in the Queens Room you would never know that lifeboats are only a few feet away. There is no actual seating on the upper level, but on the starboard side the room is lined by an attractive shopping gallery with four balconies that make perfect vantage points for onlookers. 

Queens Room
Queens Room

Kudos to the design team for coming up with a novel and highly successful incorporation of an "ocean liner room" into a modern cruise ship.

 

Fancy a pint a lager, love? Some bangers & mash perhaps? If you're in a jolly Olde English mood, head for the Golden Lion Pub on deck 2.

Golden Lion Pub
Golden Lion Pub

I've seen many shipboard "pubs" and most of them were nothing like the cozy, casual watering holes found on every street corner in the British Isles.  But here on Queen Victoria the quintessential pub feeling has found its way onto the high seas. Have a beer here. Or a typically British lunch. Including mashed peas! 

Empire Casino Golden Lion Pub
Empire Casino   Golden Lion Pub

On port side, Queen Victoria's Empire Casino cries out for attention. It seems tucked away under a low ceiling and its awkward open-plan space doesn't help either.. 

 

I have saved the best for last. On deck 3, the design team have gone all-out and have created the ultimate seagoing shopping arcade. 

Royal Arcade
Royal Arcade

Get out the shopping bags and credit cards. The Royal Arcade is a shopper's paradise, combining name brands in one beautiful, old-fashioned shopping arcade 

Royal Arcade Royal Arcade
Royal Arcade   Royal Arcade

The carpeting, window displays, lanterns and that huge clock presiding over the Atrium all add up to the charm of Royal Arcade. It is simply wonderful!

Forward elevator lobby Royal Arcade
Forward elevator lobby   Royal Arcade
 

Our final stop brings us to the room that created the biggest media buzz. The vast Royal Court Theatre features 16 semi-private boxes, which make the theater look like anything you would come to expect in the West End.

Royal Court Theatre
Royal Court Theatre

With red plush seats, incomparable sightlines and a huge stage this is the ultimate seagoing theater. Too bad the 4-seat royal boxes have a high glass railing which make the sightlines from these coveted seats less desirable.

Royal Court Theatre Royal Court Theatre
Royal Court Theatre   Royal Court Theatre

Cunard tells us they will charge approx. US$ 25 for the privilege of watching one of the production shows from the royal boxes, including dessert and alcoholic beverages.

Royal Court Theatre
Royal Court Theatre

It's time for us to leave Queen Victoria as the ship prepares to sail from Rotterdam. Even though she is not an ocean liner, she is a beautiful cruise ship bringing together the best of both worlds. Part Queen, part Princess, she brings modern-day cruising to Cunard.

     

 

Photos and text: 2007-2008 Bart de Boer - www.ShipParade.com

First published on February 10, 2008

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