Queen Victoria Cruise Ship Review

Queen Victoria Cruise Ship Review: One of Our Favourite Cruise Ships!

Embarking on a journey aboard the Queen Victoria cruise ship is an experience steeped in tradition, elegance, and a touch of grandeur that harks back to the golden age of ocean travel. This detailed review aims to shed light on the Queen Victoria, navigating through the myriad of services, amenities, and the unique atmosphere that sets this vessel apart, while also addressing common queries and misconceptions about cruising with Cunard Line. 

Cunard's Queen Victoria at Ocean Terminal, Southampton - Sail Away Magazine
Credit: Cunard’s Queen Victoria at Ocean Terminal, Southampton / Sail Away Magazine

Affordability and Value

Our adventure commenced with an exceptionally reasonable fare of £429 per person, which breaks down to about £107 per night for a four-night sojourn. This pricing is remarkably competitive when considering the inclusivity of the cruise experience against the backdrop of hotel stays, which typically offer less value for a similar price.

Accommodation: A Blend of Tradition and Comfort

Queen Victoria’s accommodations span from cozy inside cabins to luxurious Queen’s Grill Suites, known onboard as staterooms and Grills respectively, a nod to Cunard’s rich heritage. Despite their traditional and aesthetically pleasing décor, complete with sparkling wine upon arrival and Penhaligon’s toiletries, the staterooms offer a comfortable but not overly spacious or unique living space compared to other cruise lines. Our Britannia Balcony Stateroom was impeccably clean and practical, though it lacked the additional storage solutions found on ships like P&O Arcadia and Holland America’s Euordam. The presence of shower curtains, however, felt out of place for a cruise line that prides itself on premium standards.

Queen Victoria Britannia-Club Balcony Stateroom - Sail Away Magazine
Credit: Queen Victoria Britannia-Club Balcony Stateroom / Sail Away Magazine

Dining: A Culinary Journey

Dining aboard Queen Victoria is a testament to Cunard’s commitment to quality and tradition. The Britannia Dining Room served as our main dining venue, where the food consistently surpassed that of other mainstream cruise lines, though it didn’t quite reach the premium feel of Holland America’s offerings. Despite this, the service was friendly, albeit with some delays.

Dining at the Lido aboard Queen Victoria - Sail Away Magazine
Credit: Dining at the Lido aboard Queen Victoria / Sail Away Magazine

The Lido Restaurant provided a more casual dining experience with themed nights and a commendable variety, including a memorable Indian night and a fresh pizza station. The “Dinner at the Lido” specialty dining, with its Asian-inspired menu, offered a delightful change of pace for a modest cover charge.

Specialty Dining and Pubs

The Verandah stands out as a pinnacle of culinary excellence aboard Queen Victoria. This French-inspired steakhouse delivers an unforgettable dining experience, from the Beetroot and Goats Cheese Salad to the decadent desserts, justifying the additional cost with its exceptional quality.

Best Bread at Sea - Cunard's Queen Victoria - Sail Away Magazine
Best Bread at Sea – Cunard’s Queen Victoria – Sail Away Magazine

The Golden Lion pub, offering quintessential British fare like Fish & Chips and the best sticky toffee pudding at sea, is a must-visit for lunch. Similarly, the Chart Room’s French pastries and the renowned Cunard afternoon tea in the Queen’s Room elevate the snacking experience to new heights, showcasing a significant improvement in service and quality from previous sailings.

Strawberry & Champagne Pavlova at The Veranda, Cunard - Sail Away Magazine
Credit: Strawberry & Champagne Pavlova at The Veranda, Cunard / Sail Away Magazine

Entertainment and Leisure

Entertainment aboard Queen Victoria caters more to traditional tastes, with live music spanning various genres, aimed predominantly at a mature audience. While the performances were competent, they didn’t stand out when compared to the vibrant acts on Holland America or Royal Caribbean ships.

Royal Court Theatre aboard Queen Victoria - Sail Away Magazine
Credit: Royal Court Theatre aboard Queen Victoria / Sail Away Magazine

Daytime activities, geared towards a quieter, more reflective passenger experience, may not appeal to younger guests seeking high-energy thrills but provide a serene backdrop for those looking to unwind and rejuvenate.

Service: Room for Improvement

While the service onboard Queen Victoria was good, especially in dining areas and lounges, it did not distinctly surpass that of other premium or mainstream cruise lines. This aspect of the cruise experience, though satisfactory, suggests room for improvement to meet and exceed the high expectations associated with the Cunard brand.

Cunard Queen Victoria's Grand Lobby - Sail Away Magazine
Credit: Cunard Queen Victoria’s Grand Lobby / Sail Away Magazine

Spa and Wellness

The Mareel Spa is a sanctuary of relaxation and rejuvenation, offering an array of treatments and facilities that rank among the best at sea. The availability of spa passes, while limited, presents a valuable opportunity for enhancing the cruise experience through wellness.

Mareel Spa aboard Cunard's Queen Victoria - Sail Away MagazineCredit: Mareel Spa aboard Cunard’s Queen Victoria / Sail Away Magazine

Beverages: Premium Quality at a Premium Price

Cunard’s beverage offerings, including an impressive selection of cocktails, stand out for their quality but come with a steep price tag. The drink packages, though comprehensive, may not present the best value when compared to those of other cruise lines, highlighting an area where Cunard could enhance its value proposition.

Queen Victoria Carinthia Lounge - Sail Away Magazine
Credit: Queen Victoria Carinthia Lounge / Sail Away Magazine

Final Thoughts

Queen Victoria, with her traditional elegance and understated sophistication, offers a cruise experience that is both unique and deeply rooted in the heritage of ocean travel. While there are areas for improvement, particularly in service and the cost-to-value ratio of certain amenities, the ship remains a beloved choice for those seeking a blend of relaxation, culinary excellence, and a touch of nostalgia.

Cunard's Queen Victoria Docked in Southampton - Sail Away Magazine
Credit: Cunard’s Queen Victoria Docked in Southampton / Sail Away Magazine

As the industry continues to evolve, it is evident that Cunard’s commitment to maintaining the classic allure of cruising while adapting to contemporary expectations will ensure that Queen Victoria remains a distinguished choice for discerning travelers. Whether it’s the allure of the Verandah, the tranquility of the Mareel Spa, or the charm of afternoon tea, Queen Victoria beckons with promises of unforgettable journeys across the seas.

Discover Queen Victoria’s Beauty, with Our Queen Victoria Full Ship Tour Below!

Queen Victoria Full Ship Tour - Sail Away with Dan & Jay
Credit: Queen Victoria Full Ship Tour / Sail Away with Dan & Jay

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