Luxury cruise visits Dunedin: 'Just a little bit superior'

Melbourne couple Wendy and Murray Dance (right) arrived in Dunedin yesterday aboard the luxury...
Melbourne couple Wendy and Murray Dance (right) arrived in Dunedin yesterday aboard the luxury ocean liner Queen Mary 2. Photos: Christine O'Connor
The luxury ocean liner Queen Mary 2. Photo: Craig Baxter
The luxury ocean liner Queen Mary 2. Photo: Craig Baxter
The luxury ocean liner Queen Mary 2 includes a new, six storey-high grand lobby. Photos: Supplied
The luxury ocean liner Queen Mary 2 includes a new, six storey-high grand lobby. Photos: Supplied
The luxury ocean liner Queen Mary 2 includes grill suites, which come with butler service.
The luxury ocean liner Queen Mary 2 includes grill suites, which come with butler service.
The luxury ocean liner Queen Mary 2 includes the Britannia Restaurant.
The luxury ocean liner Queen Mary 2 includes the Britannia Restaurant.

Melbourne couple Wendy and Murray Dance can confirm the luxuries promised aboard the Cunard Line flagship Queen Mary 2, including butler service staterooms, are fully delivered.

The 345m-long vessel made its first visit to Dunedin yesterday.

''Cunard is different from any other line,'' Mrs Dance said.

''It's more elegant, it's white-glove service, just a little bit superior in many ways,'' she said.

The couple, who have been married for 59 years, visited New Zealand on passenger ships in 2008 and 2013, but this trip had offered the best viewing conditions of Fiordland on Tuesday.

''It was stunning, absolutely stunning,'' she said.

Mr Dance said the overall service, including in their luxury stateroom, was ''pretty good'', and the ship provided a ''very stable ride''.

After construction was completed in 2003, this huge ocean liner was ''remastered'' in Southampton, England, in 2016, in a $170million redevelopment and refurbishment.

The changes added 50 staterooms, as well as a stylish new space, the Carinthia Lounge, a Cunard spokesman said.

Ocean liners are designed for long-distance ocean travel, and are generally faster and stronger than most cruise ships, which often travel shorter distances.

Queen Mary 2 arrived in Port Chalmers at 8.23am and left for Akaroa about 7pm yesterday.

The 149,215-tonne liner carried about 2600 guests, who spent the day exploring Dunedin and the Otago region on a range of tours, Cunard said.

The ship's inaugural visit to Dunedin comes during a 13-night round-trip cruise from Sydney, which also includes visits to Akaroa and Tauranga.

Passenger prices vary widely.

A 35-night cruise from Southampton to Singapore costs from $9788 in an inside room to $90,727 in the grandest rooms.

Prices for a 14-night trip from Singapore to Dubai range from $3299 to $13,245.

Cunard said the ship combined a ''classic British heritage with Cunard's hallmarks of nostalgia, opulence and style, evident in sweeping staircases, a grand ballroom and a 360-degree promenade deck''.

Seven Seas Voyager, with capacity for 706 passengers and 447 crew, berthed, earlier than expected, at the container terminal at 9.17am on Tuesday, and sailed for Akaroa at 5.06pm yesterday.

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