Cunard announces collaboration with David Pugh
Captain's Log - October 2023
In the latest instalment of her Captain’s Log series, Captain Inger Thorhauge reveals what's been happening at the shipyard so far this autumn, including details of an exclusive tour for some of Cunard’s global travel agent and media partners.
Every day since I became immersed in the building of my new ship Queen Anne, I have been impressed by the depth, breadth, and dedication of all the teams of people bringing our new Cunarder to life. Even before the order for the ship was announced in 2017, a good deal of preparatory work was required.
Now – six years on – we’re just a little over six months away from seeing Queen Anne become the 249th ship to sail under the Cunard flag.
During this time, of course, countless specialists overseen by our own shipbuilding team as well as the vastly experienced crews at our shipyard partner Fincantieri, have helped the ship take shape, adding their invaluable individual expertise to the creation of a truly magnificent vessel. Everyone who has set foot on board Queen Anne to date has been part of this process, sharing the journey and the goal.
That’s why, on a beautiful autumn morning last week, I was excited to welcome some very special guests to the dockside at the shipyard. For the very first time, we welcomed a small group of Cunard partners from the travel trade and international media for a tour, and it’s fair to say they arrived in Venice full of anticipation for this historic behind the scenes preview of Queen Anne.
They welcomed their chance to see just what a stunning ship we have heading our way and we were delighted to provide them with a preview of some of the spectacular public rooms we have created.
We welcomed guests in the Grand Lobby and, right now, despite the mass of cables, scaffolding and safety barriers in place, this is already a stunning space. It spans three decks and is the centrepiece of the ship’s interior design. It will be home to a contemporary mural that will change throughout the day thanks to a sophisticated lighting system buried within its surface. These effects will celebrate luxury ocean travel – and nobody shares a history and heritage of sailing the seas of the world like Cunard.
From the outset of the Queen Anne project, the brief to our design teams has been to create an environment and on-board experience inspired by our past and designed for our future. Now, week by week, as the fit-out gathers pace, we are starting to see these designs take their place on board. This is a fascinating stage we are at – where computer graphics and design renders come to life.
Throughout our tour, we caught glimpses of the early finishing touches to rooms and spaces which will be a hallmark of Queen Anne’s elegant and contemporary style.
In the Britannia Restaurant – itself large enough to accommodate Cunard’s first ship of the same name – specially commissioned artwork is sure to impress guests. Here, the four Greek Wind Gods previously depicted on Queen Mary will be etched in illuminated friezes, each representing a point on the compass.
Elsewhere on board Queen Anne, signature Cunard spaces such as the Queens Room, the Chart Room, the Royal Court Theatre, the Commodore Club, and the Golden Lion pub are gradually being transformed from bare steel to become the newest versions of these favourite venues.
My tour group was particularly keen to learn more about the Spa and Wellbeing offer for guests sailing on Queen Anne. Our walk through the Mareel Spa gave them an exclusive insight into what is, without doubt, going to be one of the most stunning guest amenities.
Cunard has led the wellness concept since the early days of ocean travel, and for Queen Anne our experts and partners have completely reimagined the entire spa experience our guests will enjoy. Queen Anne will boast the widest selection of fitness, beauty, thermal and spa facilities so far seen on a Cunard ship – and these are all taking shape at a fast pace.
One part of the offer which I think will be enormously popular is The Pavilion; what our designers are calling an idyllic open-air oasis on the top deck. It’s full of plant and noisy machinery now as the fit-out continues, but my tour group could see the size and scale of the concept our guests will enjoy. And they were impressed too by the Wellness Studio and Wellness Café nearby.
The Studio is set to become a popular destination for guests seeking a fitness area bathed in natural light and open from sunrise to sunset. The Café menu will offer a sophisticated range of nutritious dishes too with a specially created menu based on plant powered foods and sustainably sourced meat, dairy, and fish options.
Right now, there’s a way to go before my new crew assembles and prepares to bring our renowned White Star Service to Queen Anne.
It’s going to be a very hectic six months, and after their exclusive preview I know my tour group will be counting down the days until we arrive in Southampton for the first time – and we can proudly show ourselves off to the whole world!
Queen Anne's journey
Presenting Cunard 4 Queens gin
Captain's Log - September 2023
Chef Michel Roux partners with Queen Anne
Captain's log - May 2023
Queen Anne's float out
Queen Anne's funnel lift
Captain's Log - March 2023
Queen Anne maiden season
Meet the design team
Unveiling Queen Anne
Behind the name
Our newest ship - Steel-cutting