The iconic former Cunard ocean liner QE2 has taken another step closer to completion with the launch of a new website for the as-yet-unnamed ‘QE2 Hotel’.
We say unnamed as the name of the floating hotel has not been officially announced, but signs recently installed at Dubai Cruise Terminal 1 in Port Rashid (where QE2 is berthed) welcome visitors to the ‘Queen Elizabeth II Hotel’.
These were the latest signs of a more secure future for QE2 after DP World appeared to invest a significant amount of money into refurbishing the former ocean liner, which had been kept in cold lay-up, slowly rotting from the inside, for several years.
Now, a new website qe2.com, proclaims that the long-awaited floating hotel is ‘Coming Soon’, and even welcomes prospective hotel employees to submit applications to work aboard the famous ship (arguably the most famous in the world after Titanic).
DP World have not made an official announcements regarding the ship’s future, but DP World chairman Sultan Bin Sulayem seems to be keeping his word after he personally assured Cruise Arabia & Africa in 2015 that “QE2 will not be scrapped, there is a new plan for her”.
A few months after he made those comments, the Mina Rashid Marina project was announced, a major plan to redevelop the entire Port Rashid into a leisure, retail and lifestyle destination, with the region’s largest yacht marina, a waterfront of hotels, apartments and shops, and the three Dubai Cruise Terminals at its centre.
A model of the new Port Rashid at Dubai’s Cruise Terminal 3 has QE2 prominently displayed alongside as a hotel at Terminal 1 (where she is docked now), and this model is placed directly in front of the official name-board for the terminal.
DP World has ‘unofficially’ confirmed its plans for the Queen Elizabeth II Hotel with a model of the Mina Rashid Marina development.
It is unlikely that DP World would make such a public display of its plans for the venerable former Cunard flagship unless said plans were set in stone.
Furthermore, Huawei in December issued a press release saying that they had been contracted to install a state-of-the-art Wi-Fi system aboard QE2. The system that they’re installing is called a wall plate AP2050DN, which will ensure total Wi-Fi connectivity throughout the massive ship.
Carl Stephens, hotel manager, Queen Elizabeth 2 Hotel said at the time: “We believe that, with the enormous help of Huawei’s Wi-Fi solution, the cruise ship hotel will identify new opportunities in the future. This will make various new services possible and help provide guests with an ultimate experience that will make them never want to leave.”
Getting information about QE2, such as the date for her re-launch as a floating hotel, is extremely difficult, but a DP World official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said that it would be “before the end of the second quarter”.