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“Great Unique Experience” 5 of 5 stars
Review of The Queen Mary

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The Queen Mary
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   1126 Queens Hwy, Long Beach, CA 90802   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #9 of 58 Hotels in Long Beach
Top Contributor
95 reviews 95 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 28 cities Reviews in 28 cities
74 helpful votes 74 helpful votes
“Great Unique Experience”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 16, 2012

We loved staying here.

If you want a pool or a spa/resort - don't stay here. Go elsewhere.

If you want to stay on a historical landmark to see what staying on a luxury liner was like back in the day, do it. The rooms were clean, the beds were comfortable, and our family suite even had portholes that opened to let the sea air in and take in the views of Long Beach.

The bathrooms - not roomy, not luxurious but you could take a shower and use a sink and a toilet. I don't spend my vacation time in the bathroom, so this was not a problem.

While staying here, we also took in the tours. My son is very into ghosts. We took the Haunted Encounters Tour and then after hours after people have left for the day we loved strolling around the ship's decks and taking pictures.

The boat itself is beautiful - woodwork that you just do not see anymore and exhibits of antiques - the bridge was beautiful.

There is a free shuttle that runs around the city of Long Beach so the location is not a problem.

Room Tip: You can request a haunted room if you like!
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  • Stayed May 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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3,401 reviews from our community

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  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
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Washington, DC
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 16, 2012

I have had to really think about how to rate and review this hotel. Bottom line--I am very glad I stayed there and would recommend it to other travelers--but--I would not stay there again. Let me explain. It was a history buff's wonderland. Staying on the same ship on which Churchill, the Duke and Duchess of Windsor, Bob Hope, and many others stayed was a bit thrilling. The Art Deco throughout the ship are a taste of a by-gone era. The rooms, modern but with enough remaining artifacts--both functioning and non-functioning--make you feel that you could ship off into the mid 20th century at any time. Two optional tours are very worthwhile: the World War II tour and the Behind the Scenes tour. Staff from the front desk to the housekeepers were uniformly friendly. For these reasons, I rate this hotel as "Very Good."

There were some things which, while annoying, would not prevent me from a return visit: On arrival, there was no record of my reservation. Fortunately, I had a print out of my reservation and received a room, although not where I had requested it; when I went to a "happy hour" one night, as advertized on a flyer on one of the ship's bulletin boards, I was told that they had not had a happy hour in a month; the three restaurants on board are alright but do not have outstanding food. (Definitely avoid the Sunday $50 buffet. I have had better offerings at a local "All you can eat" cafe.) Even the paper thin walls, for which I got ear plugs from the front desk, would not prevent me from staying here again. Why would i not stay again, then.

Simply put, the ship is not near anything and, with the exception of the tours, there really is not much to do on board, unless you want to go to the spa. To leave the ship you have to drive or take a taxi. If you know where you are going, you can take a free shuttle provided by the city, if it is going near your destination. If you are a visitor to Long Beach and are not familiar with dining and entertainment options, it is difficult to venture from the ship. Were i to stay in Long Beach again, I would definitely want to stay "downtown."

It is a shame that there is so little to do on board except eat and drink. A little imagination on management's part could produce such things as "afternoon tea" in one of the Art Deco salons, movie classics in the evening, shuffleboard on the promenade deck, etc.

Stay once for the experience, but be a "day tripper" after that.

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Syracuse, New York
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed May 14, 2012

Stayed there for 4 nights in early May. Upgraded to a family room which was good. Problem lies with hearing your neighbors through the paper thin walls. The equipment in the fitness room was most likely original vintage when the ship was built. There is no pool to lounge at. The food was a far cry from being good. You can't wait to get out of there due to cabin fever. Take my advice and stay at a harbor hotel and visit the old Queen for a day trip.

Room Tip: If you have to stay there make sure you upgrade rooms.
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  • Stayed May 2012, traveled on business
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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saint helena, ca
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 14, 2012

In keeping with the Disneyesque setting of Southern California. The cabin's aboard a 1930's ocean liner are fine and preserves its origins almost intact. Wear ear plugs because there's little sound-proofing between rooms. Eat at The Reef within walking distance, but breakfast buffet is good. A different but pleasant experience

Room Tip: water side -two bed room
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  • Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Top Contributor
58 reviews 58 reviews
19 hotel reviews
Reviews in 23 cities Reviews in 23 cities
111 helpful votes 111 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 12, 2012

We stayed two nights at the Queen Mary Hotel at the beginning of May. We'd read other reviews which basically said go for the historical aspect and the quirkiness of staying on an old liner, but it's by no means a luxurious option. We found that to be a good description. It's quite a long way from the action in terms of everything else LA has to offer but at least the parking charges were reasonable and we did find a good restaurant close by in Long Beach, so it's not like it's completely the back of beyond.

We had a suite of four rooms (including two bathrooms) with portholes overlooking the marina and out into the bay, just off the central staircase. It was really interesting to see the cabins and imagine how grand they were at one time. As hotel guests we were free to explore all the public areas of the ship - in fact don't pay for the behind the scenes tour, as this barely took us behind the scenes at all, just one private smoking room and a function room.

Strolling on the decks at sunset was great, and we stopped off for drinks in the very charming Observation Bar, which is a lovey example of art deco. Staff were polite and courteous - and we had none of the problems checking in that other reviewers had described. Safety deposit boxes are free to use. There's a shop on board for souvenirs and necessaries.

On the downside, the walls were absolutely paper thin and you could hear every single mutter and murmur of your neighbours. Also there wasn't really anywhere decent to eat on the ship. Trip advisor has quite mixed reviews of the main eatery Churchill's, so we didn't fancy taking a punt on it, given that the prices were pretty steep. The rest of the hotel didn't really inspire the necessary degree of confidence, so we opted to drive into Long beach instead. It is a long drive from the hotel into LA (26 miles) so really you either make a day of it, or you don't go.

Also, they seem to have some funny ideas about health and safety on board. Hair driers affixed over wash basins with warnings not to drop them into the water while using them. There is also no clear marking of emergency routes, which confounded us a bit when we were evacuated in the middle of the night due to a faulty fire alarm and all the fire doors automatically closed. It was the last thing we needed having just flown in from London and we weren't amused when the alarm went off again and again, or by the muffled tannoy announcements which followed, which we couldn't really make out.

On reflection, if we had our time again we wouldn't stay two nights on the Queen Mary, as one would suffice to soak up the atmosphere of the old vessel. We could then stay somewhere less quirky and olde worldy but better situated and a bit less delapidated on the second night - and get a better night's sleep!

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Peoria, Arizona
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 10, 2012

The Queen Mary is a gorgeous piece of history. If you are looking for a hotel with modern fixtures and amenities, this is not the hotel for you. If you are looking for an overall experience - rooms with the original wood, bathrooms with the original fixtures, portholes that open - this is right up your alley. I disagree with other reviewers that the hotel was not clean - our room and every part of the ship we saw was clean - just OLD - there is a difference between old and dirty. I will agree with other reviewers that the service is a lacking - staying here is not cheap and for the price we did expect a little more good ol' customer service - but we would recommend this hotel. We stayed here our entire vacation, but even if you just come spend 1 night it is a great adventure. Take some time to explore the ship and even take a tour -- and don't forget the Russian submarine!

Room Tip: Spend a lil more to get a deluxe room with a harbor view - it's very worth it. These rooms have...
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  • Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 10, 2012

Had 2 rooms - Family King +Twin and a Full King Suite. Son & family moved after one night to a different Family +Twin so we could be closer together and they could be on water side too.
The first room was long and little awkward with the only bathroom located in the children's twin side room.
For their rest of the stay, the accommodations were better with the bathroom off the main room. This was the Eisenhower Suite, Room 101. The room is also long and somewhat narrow with the separate bedroom near the door and with its own sink, closet & cupboards. A hallway led into the bedroom off of which was the full bathroom. There was room for a 1/2 size fridge, corner table and many cupboards and closets, along with a couple of chairs. Not exactly spacious but roomy enough for sleeping and dressing. We set up luggage rack in alcove so it was out of the way.

Our room was MUCH larger, but also much more expensive. The Churchill Suite consisted of 2 full rooms and a kitchen. You enter into a large foyer and go right for the kitchen (fridge & sink, counter & table with 2 chairs), or go past it into a separate space with a bathroom and very large Master bedroom.
Turning to the left after entering, takes you to a hallway off of which is the 2nd, slightly larger, full bathroom on the left or hang a right into the spacious living room with sleeper sofa, chairs, table, cabinets & tons of floor and furniture space.
Separating the entry from the living room was a pass-through walk-in closet with hooks and a shelf for jackets, hats, etc. It was closed with velvet curtains on either end which provided endless hide&seek fun for the 2 small boys.

There are lots of ways to shut off rooms with multiple doors which allowed one to nap, work, play, eat, etc. without disturbing the others. Renting both of these suites allowed the family to gather while keeping the family suite for sleeping and dressing.

Like any ship of its era, the rooms are larger than its contemporaries and storage is abundant. You could stay for a month. We were there for a week and I loved unpacking as if I were going on an ocean voyage.

Staying on the ship allows for unlimited discovery and touring. There are audio tours or you can sign up for group tours. We preferred self-discovery. Be sure to talk with the shop owners. Some have been there for years and are especially familiar with history. The best are the clock repair expert and the woman in the artifact shop. I made the mistake of waiting until my last day to check out the stores and wished I had popped in earlier. They are unlike any you will experience at other tourists stops.

We ate each morning in the Promenade Cafe. The breakfast bar is pretty good with a decent variety but the waffles were better when ordered fresh. (When will restaurants & room service realize that putting a lid on a hot crispy item turns it soft with the steam that builds? Think toast, bacon, waffles, etc.). I mention the waffles because they were the tastiest of any I've ever ordered. Served with fresh berries and their very, very lightly sweetened whipping cream and I was devoted to breakfast. The pastries included delectable miniature pan au chocolat, which to the initiated means croissants with dark chocolate pieces running down the center.

I had a problem with the scrambled eggs on both days I tried them, from the bar and made-to-order. They tasted funny. Better to order fried eggs to ensure their freshness. Fresh fruit was great, especially when pink grapefruit was available. My husband says the coffee was good and I enjoyed their tea, even though it was from bags.

The front desk staff, along with everyone else, were stellar in professionalism and courtesy. They treat everyone like VIP's which accentuated the ship's atmosphere. The cleaning crew, porters, valets and maintenance were some of the best I've ever encountered and we have stayed at some pretty high-end hotels around the world.

The complaints are few and specific, all related to NOISE. I rated the sleep as 4 instead of 5 stars because of the nightly parties on board. The first problem night was a wedding but it was doable compared to the Prom that went down on Saturday. The DJ that night thought that only the loudest level of bass booster would suffice for the soon-to-be-deaf kids. It shook ones whole body, even though we were a floor and several hallways away. It made hearts race, as it's designed to do, which is great if you want to dance but horrible if sleep is your objective. Thankfully it ended soon after midnight.

Another night, a small party boat anchored itself directly across from our windows and used amplifiers to talk to people only a few feet away. A quick call to the front desk put an end to that. Thankfully there are rules about noise on those waters and plenty of other places they can go.

The last noise issue was the Carnival cruise ship which docks nearby and used it intercom system to make departure and arrival announcements as if they were talking to people miles away. Why should we be woken at 6am just because they are disembarking??? I hated that feature when we took our one Carnival trip and despised them even more now.

The location may not be as convenient as being on the other side of the water, but we relished our special location. My husband went to his conference using the buses supplied by the Convention Center. The rest of us either walked, road the free shuttle bus which made frequent, easy trips to area sites or drove the few times it was necessary. We never left Long Beach as there was plenty to do in the area.

We never tried any of the other restaurants but heard the Winston was very good.

Would definitely do this again as long as one of the party had a large enough room to gather like we did.

Room Tip: As on any ship, interior rooms are cheaper but have no windows. Rooms water side have better views a...
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  • Stayed April 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Queen Mary

Address: 1126 Queens Hwy, Long Beach, CA 90802
Location: United States > California > Long Beach
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#5 Romantic Hotel in Long Beach
#6 Family Hotel in Long Beach
#11 Business Hotel in Long Beach
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — The Queen Mary 3*
Number of rooms: 365
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The historic Queen Mary is home to a 343-room Art Deco Hotel, where guests relive the excitement of cruising in the style of the 1930's without ever leaving port. Now permanently docked, yet still afloat, the Queen Mary is a must-see attraction which offers a variety of historical, paranormal and educational tours, unique shops, meeting & banquet facilities, three award-winning ocean view restaurants, unique hotel rooms and much more. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Queen Mary Los Angeles
Queen Mary California
Queen Mary Long Beach

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