RMS Queen Mary 2

Brooklyn, New York | C.2003

Photo Credit: @angelaweissphoto

When it comes to ocean liners, the RMS Queen Mary II is fit for royalty. Also referred to as the QMII, it is the largest ocean liner ever built and the flagship of the Cunard Line. The ship’s connection to queens both past and present began in 2004, when Queen Elizabeth II named it after the RMS Queen Mary of 1936.

Designed by a team of British naval architects, the QMII was assembled in France and completed in 2003. Intended for routine crossings of the Atlantic Ocean, the QMII was designed differently from other passenger ships. As an ocean liner, it required 40% more steel than a standard cruise ship and has a maximum speed of just over 30 knots. Today, it is the only transatlantic ocean liner in service between Southampton, England and New York City.

With 15 restaurants and bars, five swimming pools, a ballroom, theatre and the first planetarium at sea, the QMII operates at its own level of opulence. More than 5,000 commissioned works of art created by 128 artists from 16 different countries adorn the public rooms, corridors and lobbies. One of the most notable pieces is British sculptor John McKenna’s sheet bronze relief mural of the QMII that hangs in the Grand Lobby.

Along with its transatlantic route between England and the U.S., the QMII has embarked on routes all over the world, including South America, Africa, Japan and Australia. In 2007, the ship took its first world cruise and circumnavigated the globe in 81 days, finishing its journey at Sydney harbor in Australia.

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