Saturday, December 10, 2011

Refit For A Queen

Golden Lion Pub
After a major refurbishment that will prepare her to welcome guests for a luxury cruise vacation on her upcoming Transatlantic Crossings and Europe and World Voyages, Cunard Line’s flagship Queen Mary 2 has proudly returned to her homeport of Southampton to show off her new look. Engaged by Cunard Line to develop the new designs was Tillberg Design Company, who were involved in Queen Mary 2’s original concept.

The refurbishment, which took place at the Blohm and Voss Shipyard in Hamburg, Germany from Nov 24 to Dec 6, encompassed work in all staterooms and suites, the Canyon Ranch SpaClub, the Queens Grill and Princess Grill Restaurants, the Commodore Club, the Veuve Clicquot Champagne Bar, Sir Samuel’s Bar and Lounge, and the children’s Play Zone. The popular Golden Lion Pub also was completely redesigned.

Left to Right: Cunard President Peter Shanks,
artist Gail Graham and Captain Kevin Oprey
unveil the portrait of Her Majesty The Queen which
will be permanently displayed aboard Queen Mary 2.
A special new portrait of Her Majesty The Queen was unveiled in honor of her role in launching Queen Mary 2 in 2004. The oil painting, which will be displayed in the Grand Lobby, depicts The Queen during her final visit to Queen Elizabeth 2 in Southampton on June 2, 2008, and was painted by Gail Graham, an art director of The European magazine. This will be the second portrait of Her Majesty on board a Cunard ship. A specially-commissioned portrait of Her Majesty also hangs in the Grand Lobby of the Line’s newest ship, Queen Elizabeth, which she also launched in October 2010.

“Her Majesty has named four Cunard ships: Caronia (1947), Queen Elizabeth 2 (1967), Queen Mary 2 (2004) and Queen Elizabeth (2010),” said Shanks. “We had a magnificent Cunard-commissioned portrait of her by Sir Oswald Birley which originally hung on Caronia and then aboard QE2, and we have the celebrated official portrait of Her Majesty on board Queen Elizabeth which was painted last year by Isabel Peachey. So, it is with great pleasure that we extend this tradition to our flagship, Queen Mary 2.”

But, back to the refit details. The 14 days of work required a team of thousands of workers replacing the equivalent of almost ten football fields of carpet and manufacturing about 18 miles of fabric into over 6,000 individual items. Specific details of her refurbishments include:

Princess Grill Suite
-- Staterooms: All 1,310 staterooms and suites aboard Queen Mary 2 received a fresh look with new carpeting, curtains, bedspreads and some received new furniture.
-- Golden Lion Pub: The new design retains the British pub atmosphere with warm colors and plush seating in keeping with the same venues aboard sister ships Queen Victoria and Queen Elizabeth. Upgraded plasma television screens have been added to show popular sporting events.
-- Canyon Ranch SpaClub: An extensive refurbishment of the first Canyon Ranch SpaClub at sea included reconditioning the teak surrounds of the hydrotherapy pool and adjacent wet areas and a general upgrade of all the facilities. In addition, new exercise machines in the fitness centre and new and improved features in the Beauty Salon have been installed.
-- Queens Grill and Princess Grill Restaurants: A new, lighter carpet design for both of Queen Mary 2’s exclusive Grill restaurants enhances the existing ambience.
-- Commodore Club: One of the most popular public rooms on board, this lounge overlooking the ship’s bow has been refreshed with a new carpet design and additions to the white leather furnishings of chairs, sofas, and bar stools.
Veuve Clicquot Champagne Bar
-- Veuve Clicquot Champagne Bar: This venue featuring the exquisite Veuve Clicquot brand of champagne has a new carpet and new soft furnishings.
-- Sir Samuel’s: This busy venue, which features specialty coffees during the day and an impressive menu of wines at night, received new carpeting and furniture coverings.
-- The Play Zone: These facilities for younger guests underwent a complete refurbishment, including new soft play areas, plus upgrades including the very latest in electronic gaming technology and entertainment.

Photos Courtesy of Cunard Line

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