The Four Queens
Published April 20, 2013 by Tom Thrun
I fell in love with transatlantic and family travel all at the same time. It was 1962 and my father had arranged to take our family to Europe aboard the Queen Elizabeth from New York to France and return on the Queen Mary. To this day some 42 years later I can still remember certain parts of the journey as if it were yesterday. This is the effect that travel and especially family travel will have on you and your loved ones for the rest of your lives. From trips as a child to a recent trip to Malta with my wife’s family (yes, believe it or not it even works with the in-laws) the memories last forever.
After these memorable voyages on the two original Queens I fell in love with the pleasures of transatlantic crossing. So much so that I convinced Joy to sail on the QE 2 from Southampton to New York. Despite a “rocky start” my “up for anything” wife and I enjoyed another world class experience. Transatlantic crossings are unique in the world of travel because the ship is the focus of the experience, not the destination.
So when our invitation to sail on the Queen Mary 2 for its first voyage out of Ft. Lauderdale arrived it was time for a new wardrobe and to start packing. After all the hype we looked forward to a classic travel experience aboard the most famous ship in the world. We were not disappointed. After the glamour of her three older sisters I was overwhelmed by this 21st century palace on the high seas. From the gourmet restaurants to the first Canyon Ranch Spa at sea, no luxurious stone is left unturned.
During our cruise we were given a tour of the entire ship including every category of cabin available. We discovered that modern luxury can be had at very reasonable prices. 78% of the QM2’s accommodations are outside cabins and you can travel like royalty for the same price as one of those cruise ships reserved for commoners. The Queen Mary 2 is the most phenomenal and unique travel experiences since the Concorde. Whether it is a family trip or just you and your significant other, a voyage on the QM2 will be a memory that lasts a lifetime.