Home Hotels Former Queen Elizabeth 2 Cruise Ship To Become Accor Hotel

Former Queen Elizabeth 2 Cruise Ship To Become Accor Hotel

by SharonKurheg

Queen Elizabeth 2 (QE2) is a retired British ocean liner that was originally built for the Cunard Line of cruise ships. Launched in 1967, she was the last oil-fired passenger steamship to cross the Atlantic in scheduled liner services and served as the flagship of the line from 1969 until she was succeeded by the Queen Mary 2 in 2004.

The QE2 was retired from active duty in late 2008. A private equity firm, Istithmar, which also owned Dubai World, purchased her for $100 million, with the plans of converting her into a luxury floating hotel, retail, museum and entertainment destination.

The actual conversion to a hotel was put on hold for several years, due to the Great Recession of 2007-2009, as well as the poor financial performance of Dubai World. She was moved from country to country for several events, as well as dry docking for changes that never happened, until she was finally refurbished as a floating hotel, and opened as same, in April, 2018 (over 2.7 million man-hours were committed to the work to upgrade and rebuild the ship to meet hotel standards).

From that point on, the ship, permanently docked at Dubai’s Mina Rashid, has been operated by PCFC Hotels, a division of the Ports, Customs and Free Zone Corporation, which is owned by the Dubai government.

Rated as 4-star hotel, and listed as #289 of 881 hotels in Dubai, the 215-room QE2 has enjoyed an average 4.5 stars on TripAdvisor, with over 1,125 reviews.

However it’s just been announced that the QE2 will soon experience a change – although the QE2 will still be owned by PCFC Investments, operations will soon be taken over by Accor.

The French multinational hospitality company with management and franchising of hotels, resorts and vacation properties under its belt will take over operations later this month. The cruise ship will undergo further upgrades and renovations prior to joining Accor’s MGallery Hotel Collection of boutique hotels.

“We are very excited to partner with Accor on this project. We trust the group’s expertise will elevate the QE2 to a new era of operations,” said Saeed Al-Bannai, CEO of PCFC investment. “The Queen Elizabeth as we know her, has made history and we are confident that Accor will keep her legacy alive while her strong heritage and notoriety will remain a destination in itself, where guests and visitors alike can enjoy a unique experience.”

“This is a great opportunity for Accor to expand its footprint in the UAE with the introduction of a unique project which brings diversity to the portfolio, while expanding the MGallery brand presence in the city,” says Mark Willis, CEO of Accor India, Middle East, Africa & Turkey. “Not only are we in charge of the only floating hotel in Dubai, but we are also contributing the Dubai Urban Master plan 2049, with the aim to map out the path for a sustainable urban development while increasing the city attractiveness as a global destination.”

When the renovations are complete, the new MGallery Queen Elizabeth 2 will offer 447 hotel rooms, nine food & beverage outlets, ten meeting rooms, 5,620sqm area for outdoor events, six retail outlets, a swimming pool and a gym.

“We are confident that once finalised, the MGallery Queen Elizabeth 2 will become a true must-visit attraction, sharing her own stories with her guests while offering a truly unforgettable experience on-board,” added Mark Willis.

Feature Photo: Balou46 / Wikimedia

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