This is our 86 th cruise and our 6 th on Princess. We were totally impressed with the Diamond Princess. The staff and crew were so friendly and the total attention to detail was amazing. Ship was spotless. For those critics, yes, on a long voyage, something will not be to your liking but come on, get a life and don't be so critical.
Food, We had Anytime Dining, but we were able to reserve the same table every night with the same waiter and assistant. Food is the best of all ships we have been on. What you have to know, is that each venue, has a special dish but that you are able to get any special from any restaurant each night. The Osso Bucco was fantastic that someone from our family had it each night. Deserts were OK, but ice cream was very good. Huge portions. If you have a problem with a meal, send it back. Don't complain about it, they will gladly get you something else.
Specialty restaurants: Not worth it. Nothing special. Best to know just how to order cruise food in the dining rooms. Many forums on what to order and how to order. Don't complain about the ship if you just don't know how to order. Serving 3200 passengers is not easy, Give them a break.
Embarkation: First time the Diamond in Singapore for a turn around. But the ship had to dock miles away. If you arrived at the time you were supposed to arrive, very easy and simple. But if you ignored your paperwork, yes, they made you wait. Problem had nothing to do with Princess. Problem is the culture of the taxi's and bus drivers in Singapore. White lines on the ground don't mean anything. one lane means 4 lanes. This is a vacation, relax.
Ports: Here I will be a bit critical. Maybe its me, but they all seem to be the same, but with different languages and with different types of currency. Rich becoming super wealthy, Poor becoming poorer. In Singapore, Hong Kong, and all China stops, if you closed your eyes and opened them up in downtown areas, you may have been in New York City. Seemed that each country has lost its own identity.
In summary, highlight was by far the ship experience and the ports were just the excuse to cruise.