Brisbane welcomes the return of a Queen

Brisbane will host Cunard’s magnificent Queen Mary 2 when the largest ship ever to visit the Queensland capital arrives tomorrow morning.
The elegant liner is expected to berth about 8am at Fisherman Islands and will spend the day in Brisbane as part of her annual world voyage which includes her maiden Royal Circumnavigation of New Zealand.
Stretching 345 metres – more than twice the length of Brisbane’s Gabba oval – and rising 62 metres above the water, Queen Mary 2 is carrying around 2500 guests and 1200 crew.
Her second visit to the capital is expected to inject more than $500,000 into Brisbane’s economy, with guests enjoying a day of sightseeing in south-east Queensland.
Queen Mary 2 will sail for Sydney at 6pm tomorrow evening with a special group of passengers onboard.
Dozens of hard-working volunteers from the Queensland State Emergency Service, Tasmania’s Fire Service, Victoria Country Fire Authority and New South Wales Rural Fire Service have been invited to sail from Brisbane to Sydney in recognition of their tireless efforts during a summer of natural disasters.
Tomorrow’s royal call to Brisbane follows last week’s visit by Queen Mary 2’s little sister, the 90,000-tonne liner Queen Victoria, which spent the day in Brisbane on February 26 before sailing north to the Whitsundays.
Launched in 2004, the 151,400-tonne Queen Mary 2 is one of the most spacious ships at sea.  She offers 14 decks of sports facilities, shops, lounges, bars, five pools, no fewer than 10 dining options and the only planetarium afloat as well as the largest ballroom and library at sea.
Almost 75 per cent of Queen Mary 2’s 1310 staterooms feature private balconies.