Is it just me or do the new cruise ships look like giant boxes? They leave a lot to be desired on the exterior. Anyway I think with the exception of the Grand Princess Queen Mary 2, that they just don't compare in the slightest to the older ocean liners.
I agree with you. They don't have that elegance (same with the interiors) of past ocean liners. I also think some cruise ships today look too top heavy as well. I wish cruise ships today had sterns like Titanic's. Most of them look like they've been chopped off at the back!
Well, visually they do take some getting used to, externally. But, take it from someone who has been aboard (since 1972) liners both classic (1928) and contemporary, the modern ships are far superior in terms of average accomodation, amenities, and passenger comfort than the older ships were. As recently as the 1990s there were still major ships in service with bathroom-less cabins which, if I may be blunt, was a mode of travel equivalent to one of the inner circles of hell
Funny thing is, as early as the 1920s one can find references to How Ugly Modern Ships Have Become Just Like A Row of Flats Why Don't They Make Ships Look Like Ships Anymore, so I am assuming that in a generation or so, todays boxy liners will be replaced with something radically different causing a new group of ship buffs to decry how ugly things have become.
I agree with Jim...one could imagine what some from the "really old school" might have been saying when the beautiful wooden sailing ships were slowly replaced with steam and steel.
I had the opportunity to take the "Monarch of the Seas" on a Mexican Baja cruise a few weeks ago. This ship is a little older as far as cruise ships go, so it was probably not as elegant as they come. Her comfort, however, was much better than some of the ships I was able to see on the cruise. While the Queen Mary's elegance was remarkable, many areas of the ship seemed damp and cramped. The "Rose", the small sailing ship used in Master and Commander, was awesome! I loved touring the ship, but you just don't get the idea of how small and cramped this ship was until you board her yourself!
While modern cruise ships lack elegance in some cases, they do provide comfort and entertainment...and, of course, an all-you-can-eat lunch buffet!
>>Funny thing is, as early as the 1920s one can find references to How Ugly Modern Ships Have Become Just Like A Row of Flats<<
Gerald Aylmer, in his book RMS Mauretania: The Ship and Her Record certainly did not seem impressed with the appearance of the latest liners in the early 1930's...
He compares unfavourably the modern ships with the "Grand Old Lady of the Atlantic"...
"As to her appearance...Be as critical as one may there is nothing that offends the eye. Two distinctive features are at once apparent, namely, the four tall, well-raked, evenly-spaced funnels, so different from the latest squat affairs, and the absence of deck upon deck of top-hamper amidships, which gives to so many modern ships the appearance of a block of tenement dwellings that had somehow slid off the land.
The long graceful sweep of her lines gives an impression of speed and of a greater length than she actually has, and her stern is of the elegant "counter" design and not the ungainly so-called "cruiser" stern so much in vogue today. The Mauretania, the Aquitania, and the Olympic...while outclassed as they may be in certain other respects, are credited with being by far the most elegant of the large liners running to-day."
Even Franklin D Roosevelt got his twopennyworth in...
In his 1936 essay about the Mauretania, entitled "A Queen with a Fighting Heart", he dismissed the latest superliners, such as the Normandie (which, ironically, many today consider to have been the most beautiful liner of all time), as being "nothing more than floating Atlantic Cities", whilst he considered the Mauretania as being a proper "ship".
Just goes to show that there's nothing new under the sun!!!
Terrifying to think about what they'll look like in 50 years. Imagine designers going for maximum space efficiency and sending out a huge egg to lumber its way around (narrow end is the bow of course). She'll have 30 decks (the highest 10 made of balsa wood painted with brushed aluminum for stability and that ultra-tacky finish that goes with those Korean cars that think that standard leather seats makes an elegant ride. Each cabin will have a 30-foot high, 10 foot wide bundle of fiber-optic cables to resemble a neon waterfall. She'll have a 330 foot beam (to accommodate the ever-increasing beam of her passengers, if the media is to be believed). Even with all that puffiness, she'll still be a two-compartment ship, so keep an eye out for icebergs (in the Caribbean). Carnival and the Royal Navy can jointly come up with a name....Carnival Unperturbability? Carnival Solipsism?
If anyone cares to get really extreme, I suppose that given enough time and materials, there's no reason why somebody couldn't build a ship in the billion tonne range, but I don't think it's going to happen until we start building ships that go to the very stars themselves. (Assuming our species even survives that long.)
When you get down to it, the limitation on the size of a ship is dictated by what's practical, such as the need to use existing port and passenger facilities. Somebody may solve the engineering problems and have the means to build a ship displacing tens or even hundreds of millions of tonnes, but I doubt anybody would be willing to pay for the infrastructure need to support it.
Ah, the Mauretania, she did look racy (and could beat most of the modern cruise ships for speed) But alas, as Jim said, most cabins did not have bathrooms. In fact, many of Canberra's cabins did not have bathrooms, they were "down the hall" That is one advantage the modern cruise ships have over older ships. As for entertainments, I saw the Rhapsody of the Seas in Auckland last Sunday and she has a rock climbing wall sticking up right at the stern, it looked rediculous.
>>they have to be built luxuish cause to compete with Airliners,the two are competing in the same market.<<
Actually, they're not. The liner as a competitor to commercial aircraft hasn't been viable for over half a century now. What the few remaining liners do is cater to what's known as a niche market where the voyage itself is the vacation.
>>I was talking about the Queen Mary that does the Southampton to Newyork run,<<
So was I, and not just the Queen Mary Two but the Queen Victoria as well. Liners as an important means of travel from point A to point B have not been commercially viable for anything but that niche market I mentioned for a very long time now. Even when they were, the really big vessels tended to lose money without some lavish subsidies from their nations governments.