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Special Guests

Your favourite memories in 200 Transatlantic Crossings

July 4, 2013

Laura

Posted in: Special Guests

On 6 July 2013, Queen Mary 2 sets sail on her 200th Transatlantic Crossing from New York to Southampton. In 200 crossings, over half a million passengers would have boarded our flagship Queen, so we asked our Facebook fans to share their memories of their time on board with us, and here are some of our favourite memories that they sent us…

Phil Mason: The best crossing for me was in tandem with the QE2 on her final crossing from New York to Southampton. 3 days in and sailing side by side the Atlantic surprised me by being completely flat and like a sheet of glass. So much so that you could see the whole of the QE2′s reflection including the smoke from the funnel on the water.

Sophie Mackenzie: The first time I went on a Transatlantic Crossing in 2010, all of my expectations were exceeded and we’ve been on the QM2 every year since then. I love the sail away party from New York! The views are stunning and it’s great to see everyone out on deck. Deck games are always really fun too. It’s such a beautiful ship and every member of staff is friendly and so lovely.

Rob Thomas: My cruising highlight on board QM2 was when my wife and I celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary in June 2009 by doing the Transatlantic leg from New York. This was the James Taylor cruise, and we got to meet him when he did his signing, and photo calls! Then, at the end of the cruise, he did two shows, which were absolutely brilliant! So I celebrated 25 years of marriage with my lovely wife, and got to meet a true music great.

James Shannon:  I had just finished recovery from a stem cell transplant when my friends and I took our first crossing. It was magic for someone who had been through almost 18 months of radiation, chemo and a transplant. I will be on the July 6 crossing making my 10th adventure on QM2. I know it will be more magic and pleasure.

Michael Insalaco:  The day we departed I was so excited that I woke our traveling companions up at 5am in the Millennium Hilton to look out the window and said ‘there she is’!! We watched her move up the river then went back to bed knowing in less than 10 hours we’d be on board. The anticipation was palpable, my first Crossing on a glorious ship – the reverse course my Grandparents had traveled about 90 years before. It was raining and my wife and our friends wanted to stay dry as we backed out into the river, but I said, ‘I’m not missing this view of the New York skyline and harbor’. I advised them that in an hour or so we would have nothing but water to look at for the next 5 days and so we all stayed on the top deck until we passed under the Verrazano Bridge, so close we could almost touch it. If only I had known that we could have been in the hot tub, but it took a day for us to catch on to that amenity and the many others on that glorious ship. We loved it.

Photo sent in by Michael Insalaco

Elliott Green: Sailing from New York to Southampton in August 2012 was a great way to end a fantastic summer. I’d just finished my A-Levels and sailing on the QM2 was a brilliant way to relax before launching into university. I met some great people and made friends for life, in our self named ‘G32 Crew’ due to the amount of time (and money) we spent in the nightclub. It really is a unique experience and so for QM2 to have crossed the Atlantic 200 times is an astounding achievement and one I’m proud to have been a part of.

Samuel Biddulph: The 100th crossing was the first part of my 3 week combined cruise encompassing cruising up the east coast before returning back across the Atlantic. I think the majesty and prestige of being able to do the Transatlantic on such a majestic, luxurious and grand ship lives long in the memories.

Sarah Heffernan: In May 2010, we boarded Queen Mary 2 with our niece Tracy and her lovely husband Doug. They came with us to our stateroom and hurried us to go for a drink in the Golden Lion. As we had travelled for 6 hours to get to this beautiful ship, we wanted to rest a while. They were insistent that we go for a pre-cruise drink. Reluctantly, we went with them. We took a seat, ordered our drinks and got into conversation. In my eye line I could see what appeared to be a female pair of legs without a body attached. Then the female stood up and to my surprise, a couple of friends appeared – friends we have a great affection for. Our niece and her husband and our friends had arranged an amazing surprise for us both. Our Transatlantic Crossing was special already, however now it had become astonishing. Our cruise across the Atlantic had so many special memories. One day soon we will sail on board QM2 again. Have a very happy 200th crossing – wish we were there!

“This is the moment that we realised that we had 2 very special friends joining us, a secret kept by our niece and nephew Tracy and Doug, and our very special friends Sue and Robert for a long time.” - Sarah Heffernan

John Waring: My wife and I were on the maiden Transatlantic and the return to Southampton in tandem with Queen Elizabeth 2. The greeting in New York, both ships sitting together in New York with all the people watching and photographing with the fireworks, music and sail away party will never be forgotten. The ships crossing sides during the tandem crossing, getting buzzed by the Royal Air Force 1 day out of Southampton and the reception both ships received when we reached the Solent was equally unforgettable… A wonderful trip with many wonderful memories.

Andi Scott: Quite simply THE most amazing experience of my life. I had wanted to cross the Atlantic on a liner since I was a little boy and after 30 years of wanting to do it, I did it last year. Sometimes, when you build something up so much in your mind, it can lead to disappointment. However, Queen Mary 2 and all of the crew and staff made it the most memorable 7 days of my life. Thank you, so much Cunard. Even as a solo traveller, it was outstanding.

Bryan Ditcham: When we see this picture of the QM2 we remember the sail away as the sun set and the band sung and played NEW YORK, NEW YORK. It was a wonderful moment.

Stephen Macey: I was on QM2 doing a Southampton – New York return. I spent the day in NY with my oldest friend, who lives in New Jersey. On the return voyage James Taylor and his band had embarked on the way to start a European tour. The whole experience was wonderful; QM2 more than lived up to expectations and in my view ranks alongside the original Queens and the QE2 as a fantastic ocean liner. I very much hope to sail in her again. HAPPY MEMORIES.

Susan Price: A little over a year ago, my dream cruise came true – I boarded the Queen Mary 2 in New York on my first ‘crossing’ to Southampton. This was a very special crossing as we would arrive in Southampton on Tuesday 5 June 2012, along with the Queen Victoria and Queen Elizabeth as a part of the Diamond Jubilee Celebrations!

I was going solo on this journey and on board I met two other ladies, Helen and Brigette, beginning a new set of friendships still intact today.

I will always remember the second night, as it was the Black and White Ball. I entered the ballroom and what a sight that was! Everyone was dressed in their formal attire, with numerous men in kilts and military uniforms, and of course, the ladies were all dressed to the nines. One gentleman in particular stood out. He was an older gentleman dressed in some kind of red military uniform – I only saw him from the back, but he looked oh so dapper!

The next day I was sitting in the dining room enjoying my coffee when I saw the back of what appeared to be the same gentleman from the night before standing in front of the elevator. I jumped up and approached him and asked him if he was the gentleman that had been dressed in the red military uniform the night before – he was. We introduced ourselves – he was Harry and his uniform was from the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. That meeting started a beautiful friendship that lasted the entire crossing. 

But the BEST part of this cruise was the arrival in Southampton! The morning began EARLY with the Queen Mary 2 leading into the harbor, followed by the Queen Elizabeth and Queen Victoria. The QM2 continued on and turned around in the harbor while the other two docked. Then we slowly passed the Queen Victoria with a three horn salute, and they in turn, responded with a three horn salute, with British flags flying EVERYWHERE. Then we continued on to salute the Queen Elizabeth with a three horn salute, and she in turn, did a three horn salute as we passed her. I simply can’t describe the feeling that came over me when those horns blasted – it was absolutely THRILLING to have been a part of this historic moment in time!

Photos above and below taken by Susan Price

André Meyer: I have just crossed the Atlantic with Queen Mary 2 – arriving on 1st June 2013. This was the view as we sailed into New York – an unbelievable experience!

Photos above and below taken by André Meyer

Thank you to everyone who sent us their favourite memories and photographs from their time on board Queen Mary 2 during one of her 199 Transatlantic Crossings!

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  1. Ship Cruises says:

    Shared memories are like a porthole through which you can see the waves of emotion inside the heart of the nаrrator. All these shared moments in the article let me taste the salt of the ocean and the smell of the fair winds. Thank you for your stories …

  2. David Harland says:

    I can only wish – feel free to party without me.

  3. On May 3,2013 we did the thirty day round trip on the QM2 out of New York. The trip was to celebrate our 50th anniversary. Each day was more wonderful than the last. We enjoyed the crossings, the shore excursions were terrific and we met so many interesting and fun people. Thank you Cunard for the memories. We will be back on board December 22, 2013 to bring in the New Year.

  4. judith says:

    Our first trip was a from New York to Southampton, my husband was hoping for the roaring Atlantic, he was disappointed, it was flat flat flat,(the English channel was choppier) since then we have done 2 more and they were more lively!! But we were hooked from that first journey, wonderful service, superb food and and entertainment. Sailing out from New York going under the bridge unforgettable. We are now Platinum members, turn Diamond on completion of our next voyage, and still looking forward to more places to visit with Cunard.

  5. Hello again Peter.

    Its been a while since I wrote to you, and I’m doing so again because that first above post reminded me that I too had enjoyed that same Atlantic Tandem Crossing – so smooth for late April- early May I believe. I enjyed it because we were in QE2 looking at the new big hunk. Capt McNaught kept us entertained and amused with tales of that upstart new-boy-on-the-block followig us! The new boy of course QM2 captained by Cmdre Warwick, senior to McNaught but as we in QE2 still carried the famed Britannia Cup we were actually, tecnically Senior Ship of the expanding Cunard fleet. Enjoyable crossing and wonderful memories. The Britannia Cup was transferred to QM2 at the end of that voyage.

    But what are you doing Peter? Thought you were retired?

    Cheers,

    David

  6. Alasdair Cook says:

    Been On two Transatlantic crossings the 1st, November 2011 from Southampton to New York and the 2nd, November 2012 from New York to Southampton. What a Wonderful experience definitely the only way to cross the Atlantic. The sheer luxury of it all. Afternoon Tea was one of the Highlights along with me trying to play The Theme from Titanic on the piano in the Talent Show!

  7. debbi says:

    i had the pleasure of sailing transatlantic november 2010 with my dad, who has since passed.
    thanks QM2 for the beautiful memories..

  8. Anne Edwards says:

    We have sailed on the QE2 and the three Queens currently in service and wish to compliment Cunard for commemorating not only Sir Samuel but also former ships and captains by naming suites in their honour. Cunard you have a history which is outstanding, continue to be proud and aim to maintain the standard associated with the name of Cunard for over 170 years.

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