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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - August 29, 1973, Lethbridge, Alberta The anchor MILLION INVESTMENT AND The Queen Mary lives once more By CURTIS J. SITOMER Christian Science Monitor LONG Calif. The curtain rises in the fashionable ship's salon. An octet of fresh- ly attractive youths into a Charleston. They're clad in sailor boy suits remini- scent of the 1930's. And to the delight of a standing-rooni-only they offer a bit of George M. Cohan's and rush through a Orshwin medley before rocking to a slower A deck an older couple relax in a spacious fastidiously decorated in Old English style. In the Sir Win- ston Churchill dining a sumptuous dinner awaits them. It's a page out of the past. A return to the days when Her Majesty's prize ocean the Queen navigated the rough seas of the Atlantic and ferried European American stage and affluent commoners across the ocean. But the ship's salon is a dry- dock theater now. And her plush staterooms and cabins serve as hotel accommodations in this seaside resort suburb of Los Angeles. the Queen Mary is one of the West's most popular tour- ist attractions. Since her sale to the Port of Long Beach by the Cunard Line in 1967 and subsequent conversion to a mu- convention and visitors' mecca two years over 3 million people have come abroad and relieved her luxury sailings. Ironically for the which never sustained a seri- OIB breakdown or a direct hit during the Second World War when she doubled as they troop carrier the comeback channel was fraught with obstacles. Almost since she drydocked here for massive overhauling into a tourist union problems and municipal squab- bles over costs delayed her re- conversion. Diners the original mas- ter lessee of the ship's com- mercial ventures jumped ship and after some delay was replaced by Specialty Queen Inc. A spate of lawsuits ensued. late in a local tax- payers group spurred a recall election of four Long Beach city councilmen among other that they turned the Queen Mary project into a Due to several costs to the city had more than doubled from an es- timated million to mil- These and other obstacles theatened to mothball the pro- ject almost indefinitely. But one by one they have been hurdled. Now the ship's bathe and soak in all of the Queen's attractions. A gala which is still being Jacques Cousteau's exhibit. The tri-level design- ed by the noted French ocean- embraces such themes as crops from the man re-entering the quest for and a win- dow in the sea. Those entering the living sea find themselves on a simulated spaceship past the parched landscapes of nearby planets. They on earth the water planet amid and mist. And then they are whisked under- seas moving through Cous- teau's watery world of fish underseas and unique sea creatures. Recent additions to the ing are an electric eel whose 800-volt charges are monitored by an oscillos- cope and a 25-pound lobster. Soon to be installed is a gigantic tide pool containing live star sea ane- and other underwater pheomens. Upper decks of the Queen Mary buzz with activity amid shops and dis- plays. For the formal the Lord the Lady Ham- and the Sir Winston Churchill offer varied fare of prime and sea food. Snack stands feature hot dogs and fish and chips. Quaint shipboard stores offer and homemade candies. The Queen Mary was pur- chased from Cunard for million. But the capital invest- ment in the project now tops million. Among recent additions is a 400-room hotel built by Pacific Southwest Airlines. rich colored carpeting and wood-paneled walls grace the entire hotel. And accommo- dations closely simulate those enjoyed by Queen Mary passen- gers in the 1930's and 1940's. Much of the luxury liner's fur- and other decor has been restored for hotel guests. Daily rates range from for small to for supsr-suites. The Queen Mary Hotel will host national conventions dur- ing winter and spring months. now booked through Wilson. been taking re- servations at an average of three conventions a day. And in the last six we've done in Opening in the fall as a sat- ellite attraction to the Queen Mary will be the This English village will contain 40 a and an authentic pub. and Ed- wardian periods are all embod- ied in the village's tures. But due to fire restric- For the main entrance their roofs will be tile and slate rather than authen- tically thatched. Thatched roofs or the ship's attractions are to help its visitors share in another world and time. And now the once proud Queen of the At- lantic reigns again here on the shores of the Pacific. .The Queen Mary at Long Beach in California Sears on 40 sq. yds.1 The happy-go-luxury shag for any room in your home Luxurious it But you needn't tread softly This sumptuous shag is nylon pile. 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