New cruise liner to set sail

Cunard's new cruise liner, the
Queen Elizabeth, has been officially named by Queen Elizabeth II ahead of her maiden voyage.

The ship, which was named in a ceremony October 11, is the second largest ship built by Cunard, the company which operated the iconic QE2 and the original Queen Elizabeth, which was for 56 years the largest passenger liner in the world.

Cunard says that the new Queen Elizabeth pays tribute to her predecessors through the inclusion of original pieces from both ships and an art-deco style, as well as themed balls in the ship's ballroom, occasional supper clubs under the stars in the "Garden Lounge" and afternoon tea with fresh scones.

However, the ship also includes some modern touches, such as a computer centre, an arcade housing designer brands and a 13,000 square foot (1,208 square meter) spa which includes a hydrotherapy pool and thermal suite.

Dining options range from haute cuisine in the Verandah Grill to informal chatter in the Golden Lion Pub and bars also range from elegant cocktails in the Commodore Club to poolside tipples at the Pavilion Pool.

After the naming ceremony, Queen Elizabeth will depart October 12 on a 13-night Mediterranean maiden voyage, which is sold out.

The next six months will see slew of new cruise ships launched - Royal Caribbean's Allure of the Seas is expected to become the world's largest liner when she launches December 1, and Disney launches a new ship in January 2011.

Oceania Cruises is set to launch its new ship Marina in February 2011, followed by a new ship from German line AIDA which will launch in early April.

Watch highlights of the naming ceremony: http://www.cunard.co.uk/
Follow the Queen Elizabeth on her bridge webcam http://www.cunard.co.uk/Ships/Queen-Elizabeth/Bridge-Web-Cam/

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