The QE2 will open for an exclusive invitation-only New Year’s Eve party at its Dubai home.

The former Cunard flagship, which was retired from service in 2008, is being opened to the public for the first time for such an event.

The QE2 black tie event is being designed as one of the most exclusive New Year celebrations in the world for an unspecified number of VIPs, celebrities and dignitaries.

A limited number of tickets will go on sale this week to the general public. A percentage of proceeds from ticket sales will be passed on to a local charity.

The event aims to treat guests to a “unique, luxurious experience and the most stylish way to ring in the New Year of 2012,” according to organisers Global Event Management.

Queen Elizabeth 2 spokesman Leili Gerami said: “In the year in which the UAE celebrates turning 40, the QE2 also enters her 40s with a new lease of life in Dubai as a fabulous venue for a glittering start to 2012.”