The Queen Elizabeth 2, former flagship of Cunard, opens today as a floating hotel in Dubai, with its first guests scheduled be passengers arriving on Cunard's current Queen Mary 2.
It's a soft opening, with only 7 of the 13 decks on the former liner ready for guests, and 224 cabins; the rest of the ship is scheduled to open by October. The hotel is owned and run by PCFC Hotels, part of the Dubai government's investment arm.
The ship has undergone a $100 million dollar restoration, returning it to the styles and conditions of the 1960s, when it was built, and features a number of restaurants and bars, which will be allowed to serve alcohol. Rooms will range in price from about $150 a night to $15,000.
The QE2 is the second Cunard liner to have a second career as a hotel; the Queen Mary is a hotel at Long Beach, California.