Cunard Line president Peter Shanks holds the keys to Queen Elizabeth. // © Cunard Line
Cunard Line has taken delivery of Queen Elizabeth — the second largest Cunard ship ever built and the third new liner for Cunard in six years. The 2,092-passenger vessel is a sister to Queen Victoria, with an overall art deco look and some new and revived elements, including the Yacht Club on Deck 10 and an artificial lawn for croquet, English garden bowls and paddle tennis.
The Todd English restaurant has been replaced by The Verandah, with Cunard chef Jean-Marie Zimmerman in charge of the French menu and a la carte pricing rather than a cover fee.
The Britannia Club level, introduced on Queen Mary 2, has a dedicated restaurant on the Queen Elizabeth, giving the top category of standard staterooms a restaurant with open dining hours. In addition, following other cruise lines that have abandoned art auctions, Queen Elizabeth will have a real gallery, set up by Clarendon Fine Art on London’s Dover Street.
The Royal Arcade will offer shopping from Fortnum & Mason, a London institution since 1707; traditional menswear from Hackett; a Scottish shop selling Harris Tweed; and handbags and accessories from Anya Hindmarch.
Cunard Place is still dedicated to Cunard’s royal history, as it was on the Queen Victoria, but it has been redesigned to allow easier flow and the jewelry shop has been replaced with the shop for Cunard books and memorabilia.
The newbuild’s handover ceremony took place at the end of September onboard the new 92,400-ton vessel at the Fincantieri Monfalcone shipyard. The event included a speech by Cunard President Peter Shanks. The Italian flag was ceremonially lowered and the Blue Ensign was raised.
“This ceremony to mark the completion of the Queen Elizabeth and our acceptance of delivery, is just one of a number of significant events including the ship’s official naming by Her Majesty The Queen in Southampton,” said Shanks. “I’m certain the British will take this truly magnificent ship to their hearts as they have all the Cunard Queens.”