Dining aboard a Cunard ship is by class, so dining-room assignments are made according to the accommodation category booked.
You can get as much luxury as you are willing to pay for on Cunard liners, where passengers in Junior suites are assigned to the single-seating Princess Grill; the posh Queen’s Grill serves passengers booked in duplex apartments and the most lavish suites. All other passengers are assigned to one of two seatings in the dramatic, multideck-high Britannia Restaurant or Britannia Club Restaurant on Queen Elizabeth.
Although fare in Britannia is reasonably traditional and often outstanding, off-menu requests by Grill passengers are commonly granted—provided the galley has the ingredients. Menus also include vegetarian and low-calorie selections.
The most coveted table reservations are those on Queen Mary 2 and Queen Victoria in the restaurants named for Todd English, the celebrity American chef and restaurateur noted for his innovative Mediterranean cuisine and sumptuous desserts. Both dinner ($30 per-person cover charge) and lunch ($20 per person) are offered in the intimate restaurant.
Aboard Queen Mary 2, the Chef’s Galley is a small reservations-required restaurant, where diners look on as their food is prepared in an open galley setting; the only charge here is for wine. The King’s Court buffet is transformed each evening into three no-charge casual alternative dining spots: the Carvery specializes in carved meats; La Piazza is dedicated to pasta, pizza, and Italian dishes; and Lotus offers Asian regional specialties.
Entertainment has a decidedly English flavor, with nightly production shows or cabaret-style performances and even plays.
An authentic pub gives the liners an even more British air, while music for dancing and listening is played in other bars and lounges. In Queen Mary 2’s first-ever shipboard planetarium, high-tech presentations and virtual-reality shows offer a virtual ride through space.
Cunard’s fine enrichment programs include lectures by experts in their fields, including top designers, master chefs, and artists. Even seamanship and navigation courses are offered to novice mariners. Passengers can plan their activities prior to departure by consulting the syllabus of courses available online at Cunard Line’s website.
Fitness & Recreation
Swimming pools, golf driving ranges, table tennis, paddle tennis court, shuffleboard, and jogging tracks barely scratch the surface of shipboard facilities dedicated to recreation.
Top-quality fitness centers offer high-tech workout equipment, a separate weight room, and classes ranging from aerobics to healthy living workshops.
Queen Mary 2’s Canyon Ranch Spa Club is a one-of-a-kind facility at sea offering salon services for women and men, including the famous land-based spa’s signature 80-minute Canyon Stone Massage. A huge 30- by 15-foot thalassotherapy pool offers a deluge waterfall, air tub, neck fountains, and massage-jet benches and recliner lounges located in the pool. The thermal suite has an herbal sauna, Finnish sauna, aromatic steam room, and reflexology basins. Use of these special features is complimentary with a massage or body treatment; otherwise, there’s a per-day charge.
The daily SpaClub Passport includes use of the fitness center, thermal suite, aquatherapy center, locker rooms, and a choice of fitness classes. Robes, sandals, and beverages are also available for spa goers and SpaClub Passport holders in the relaxation lounge. Steiner Leisure operates the more pedestrian spas on the rest of the fleet.