Just south of LAX, the Queen Mary makes its home in LA’s Long Beach harbor. Although the Queen Mary is most technically a hotel, it is also a world-class old-fashion luxury ocean liner, making it one of LA’s most interesting places to stay and visit.
The Queen Mary’s history dates back to Scotland in 1930 when it was built as the world’s most luxurious ship. Its builders spared no expense, and much of the opulent elegance and grandeur is still evident today. Her maiden voyage took place in 1936 during the height of luxury cruising. Celebrities and dignitaries like Bob Hope, Clark Cable, and Winston Churchill enjoyed voyages aboard. As an interesting side note from luxury cruising, the liner was used in WWII from 1939-1947. By 1965, the increase of air travel made the Queen Mary’s grandeur hard to fund. She arrived in Long Beach and was so taken with the Southern California weather that she has not moved since.
314 staterooms and suites are now offered on board the ship, and no two rooms are completely alike! Families can enjoy the Family Staterooms featuring two bedrooms so both parents and kids can enjoy their time. Even the standard rooms are far from your idea of a typical cruise ship room. Built long before the idea of modern economical cruising, the rooms are large, beautifully decorated in wood paneling, and feature modern amenities like flat screen TVs and Wi-Fi.
In addition to rooms, the Queen Mary can be visited for a day-trip, without the need to stay the night. She offers historic tours, including ghost tours if your children are so inclined. Three full service (and award winning) restaurants are on board as well as a grab-and-go bakery. Events are held year-round on the ship and in the nearby lots and premises.
The Queen Mary is hosting an amazing and one-of-a-kind holiday celebration this year: CHILL. Families can visit the Ice Kingdom where two million pounds of ice have been skillfully crafted into amazing holiday scenes and characters by Chinese artisans. The ice sculptures are reminiscent of Harbin China’s yearly ice festival and are incredible to gawk at. The temperatures inside the Ice Kingdom are a chilly nine degrees; the provided parkas are very helpful for the transition from Southern California to Arctic weather! Other holiday activities on site include a Holiday Village with photo opportunities with Santa himself, ice skating, ice tubing slides, carolers, cookie decorating, and plenty of Christmas shopping. CHILL runs now through January 6, 2013.
Hop aboard and book your Los Angeles family vacation today!
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