Transatlantic five star
David Middleton | May 6, 2017 | Cunard | Queen Mary 2
This was a fly out – cruise back on the transatlantic crossing. We flew from Edinburgh non stop to JFK New York on an American Airlines flight which is timed at 6hrs 40min but got there in just over 6 hours. Baggage recovery and immigration and customs were swift and congenial. There was a problem with being met for our transfer to Manhattanwhich is currently under review. However our Crowne Plaza hotel on Broadway was excellent and we had a spacious room with skyscraper views down to the Hudson river. After a hectic five days seeing Grand Central station, the Met, Central park, Cats and the multitude of other sights of New York we were ready for the relative calm and relaxation on board Qeen Mary 2.
Transfer from the hotel was trouble free and a chance for a final tour of New York and Brooklyn. Cunard ships leave from Red Hook terminal in Brooklyn. There was a long wait in the terminal while the ship was readied for us; there had been some hold up with an inspection. But once processed we were soon in our comfy balcony cabin, one of the steel fronted type. From then on the luxury and comfort of the ship was enjoyed. A bottle of bubbly awaited us and we perused the daily activity sheet provided. Lunch was taken in the Kings Court buffet and the standard of cuisine was very good and this would be continued in the main dining room also.
There was a full programme of talks during the crossing but we also enjoyed ballroom dancing, quizzes, shows, classic recitals and dining and meeting fellow passengers.
There were many other things to do such as swimming, wine tasting, pubs and clubs, shows and cinema or walking the deck enjoying the sea air. We also attended four cocktail parties laid on by Cunard. The crossing was smooth due to good weather and QM’s good sailing properties.
The Cunard ships have a very good presentation of nostalgia in the form of photographs of famous past passengers and the general experience we found was one of restrained luxurious good taste. The ship never seemed over busy due to the generous area of the public spaces. Queen Mary 2 has the best library of any ship I have sailed on.
We arrived only too soon at Southampton and were transferred to the airport for our return flight to Edinburgh and were home in time for tea..
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