We spent 23 wonderful days on board this amazing ship and could not fault anything . We had an inside cabin and it was the best we have ever had after 4 previous cruises. We went to Pt Douglas' Darwin ,Bali Hong Kong Taiwan Nagasaki Dalian And Shanghai.All the ports were different but equally as
exciting and we shared many wonderful experiences both on our own and on shore tours. I would have no hesitation Cruising with Princess or P and O again . In fact I have just booked another cruise and cant wait to be off into the wild BLUE sea again
This was just a fantastic cruise. It was a last minute decision to do this cruise but it has to be the best we have ever done. We have curised in the Carribean and the Meditterean, New Zealand, Pacific and Asia before but this was the best. It hit 5 stars on all catagories. Met some fantastic
people and had a generally enjoyable holiday. There was a great balance of shore excursions and on board time to make this the best ever cruise we have done. The food was to die for, the staff were soooo helpful and there was plenty to choose from in the entertainment field. Must say that we were not too keen on going to Bali, however our day at Bali was really very good and even though I would not go back for a holiday, we enjoyed the experience. Cruising is a great way to see if you want to experience a place for a longer period of time. Looking forward to doing another trip with Princess next year from San Francisco to Sydney.
We are avid fans of Princess Cruises and were quite excited to board the Diamond for the first time. The ship itself was beautiful. We travelled in a 4 berth cabin and found that we had more space particularly for our clothes, than on other cruises.
We left Sydney a couple of days before Christmas. The ship was decked out beautifully with Christmas decorations and Christmas day was well done with a city of gingerbread houses, carols, Santa and [fake] snow. It was great having such a fantastic Christmas dinner without having to lift a finger.
New Years Eve was spectacular with all night parties all over the ship and a balloon drop at midnight.
The ship itself was fantastic - took a little bit of getting used to at first because it was so big, but it didn't take long to get used to where everything was.
We found the food, service and entertainment a cut above what we had experienced on the Sun Princess. Better choices on the menu almost every night and our table attendants were easily the best we have ever had - nothing was too much trouble. We loved the buffets on deck, particularly the Asian (make your own soup) and the Italian buffet with a huge range of cheese that I was tempted to dive into.
The production shows were pretty much the same as we have seen on other cruise ships but they had a really large crew, probably twice as big as the Sun Princess. The guest entertainers on board were good also - our favourite was the Elton John / Billy Joel impersonators. They were great - we were disappointed that they were only on one night. The crew show was the best entertainment on the ship.
The size of the ship we found made it difficult to meet up with other guests that you had met previously. We agreed that we prefer slightly smaller ships because the experience with other guests is a bit more intimate. The cruise entertainment staff were plentiful but they didn't seem to work as hard as we have seen on other ships. Deck waiters were few and far between - I would often read on deck for hours and rarely saw any attendants offering bar service.
One of our sons was involved in an incident on board where another child was violent and threatening to a number of other passengers including our son. At first we were very unhappy at how the whole thing was handled by Princess. We felt that the action taken by Security didn't take the incident seriously enough. Although the incident wasn't repeated, for a couple of days we felt that our son was at risk of further attacks from this other passenger.
The biggest disappointment was the weather - which was surprisingly cold despite the time of the year. Milford sound was beautiful but freezing and we didn't come prepared for the cold weather. We had been to most of the ports before, so we did very few shore excursions. We knew what we wanted to do and how to do it ourselves.
Activities on board were a little disappointing. Some things were cancelled because of a lack of interest.
Would we take it again - in a hearbeat. We loved the experience and providing the Diamond keeps coming to Sydney we might try to pick it up on the Singapore to Sydney leg.
Very heavily "American" themed cruise, buffet 6-10, variety of food ,6-10. Booze prices were very reasonable,eg 5 x 660ml bottles of heavy beer for $24.00 and really good Margarita's for about $8.00 inc gratuities, other cruise lines could learn from this ship. Mini suites have a very large
uncovered balconies located on "Dolphin" deck 9, which proved useless with 7 days of wind rain there is no shelter to talk of, you can't even have the door slightly ajar because the door is flush with outside wall. When sunny it was blazingly hot , not to mention no privacy at all from the gazing eyes of about 50 rooms above on the next 2 decks above which are either half or fully covered. Forget about private sun bathing. If you like balconies like us, book a standard balcony on the "Aloha" "Baja" and "Caribe" on the upper decks only.
24 hour room service was fantastic, as was our steward named "Arlon". "Movies under the Stars" on deck 14 was fantastic with the free freshly cooked Hotdogs, Pizza, Ice Cream and Popcorn. Picture quality and sound system have to seen to be believed. Several staff had some attitude but that's bad from a crew of some 1600 people. Itinerary was OK but the trip from Melbourne to Hobart was dragged out. We feel that an overnight stay in Hobart would have been very achievable. Maybe they were conserving fuel? Shore excursion prices can easily be beaten by a bit of google work prior to arrival, car hire was really cheap both in New Zealand and Hobart which meant we could actually do about 2 or 3 ship based tours for a fraction of the price.
Example in Hobart we hired a new XR6 Ford and did the "Cadbury Factory" "Port Arthur" "Wrestpoint Casino and Mt Wellington with beverages and a beautiful seafood lunch for two back at the dock for under $250 OZ dollars, car was $110.00. I'll let you find out how much those trips cost onboard.
Duty free alcohol sales were held on the 2nd last day for several hours only, a disaster to say the least, 1 hr queues, most stocks ran out after queing for 40 mins,a lot of disgruntled passengers. It was terrible organisisation considering we had 12 days prior to purchase. What happened to secure sales held in storage and delivered to you room the night before disembarking. Ship was huge and beautiful yet quite difficult to navigate, took us about 4 days to settle in.
Tipping is very foreign to "Aussies" and maybe the etiquette of this practice should be explained a bit better to the locals? We heard stories of 2 couples having the experience of being almost completely ignored by their cabin stewards after a few days of no tipping when they thought the automatic tipping charge of $12.00US per person per day to their account was sufficient. To save this embarassment sign a "Gratuities Waiver Form " at the customer service desk upon boarding, this frees you up to tip anyone when and where you see fit. Or maybe Princess could stop paying subserviant wages and add a few bucks to everyones fare to delete this antiquated practise. A tip only means something when it is above your normal rate of pay. That's when it truly is a bonus, not a right!
We tipped our Steward about $120.00 US because we wanted too, and on occasion bar of Cadbury's chocolate with a $10 note after we visited the factory, he loved it. We also tipped some of the staff at the Italian Restaraunt for their examplary service.
This may sound snobby but the service was almost too good! too many waiters asking about everything every 2-3 mins it was very hard to hold a converstion with your fellow diners. But I guess it's better too have too much service than none hey. Happy Cruising.
Had an 18-night cruise Bangkok/Sydney - cruise had started in America - money on board in US$ and we were not given a good rate - did not enjoy the quality of the food on the buffet; ship now clean enough - public areas far from satisfactory; entertainment fair but not good enough and certainly
could not be compared with the wonderful cruise experience we had on the Sun Princess in 2011. Will not go Diamond again!
Embarkation was on time despite the ship being delayed 2 hours because of fog. We found the staff, room steward and waiters all welcoming and friendly. We opted for an inside room as flying from Australia had taken up a big chunk of our funds. We found this room to be the smallest of all cruise
lines we had used before but as sunrise was around 4am each morning was quite happy for the room choice. Food on board was not to our liking but looking around most other people seemed not to have a problem and we did enjoy the desserts. This ship had predominently Japanese travellers but we enjoyed this interaction, the staff for the most part spoke english and all but 2 of the shows were in english, we found the standard of the shows outstanding but the other entertainment on board was really aimed at a far older demographic and they seemed to enjoy it immensly, grantedly the agrigate age seemed to be 70'ish so most people had a ball. Being 20 years younger made a big difference. We did go up to the disco but it was empty most nights. We did the north Island and the ports were outstanding, most ports had information booths as you disembarked and the Japanese made us most welcomed. I would highly recommend this cruise, The ship, food and basic entertainment was not the nicest for us but the staff and ports of call more than made up for the short fall of the ship.
Great cruise overall. We thought the entertainment was very good, and varied to meet most tastes. The cabin met our needs and the bed so comfortable that we must purchase a new mattress for home. The relaxed Spas, Deck Chairs and Atrium area were really special.
The downsides were the wait staff in the anytime dining areas were super fast and so efficient, they would race over to the table, interupt a conversation to present the desert menu and try to rush you to decide what you wanted. The food looked attractive, tasted great, was the right temperature but alas for a low fat, low carb person like me, the Princess response was to pick around the menu which was rather difficult. A sorbet with whipped cream mixed in, not on the side?
The what appeared to be compulsory visas whether you went ashore or not totalling $161.60AUD for 2 was another surprise.
Overall a great experience
We thoroughly enjoyed this cruise. The Princess cruise line is superior and the staff, food, entertainment, cabins lived up to this. We even wished we had more sea days to get everything done on the ship. Korsakov was a bit disappointing, but I believe it is a new port and it shows the real
Russian countryside. The other ports were all amazing - all different to main Japan.
Congratulations go to Cruise Republic and Cruise Sale Finder for their amazing service. Always so helpful and polite, nothing is too much trouble. Well done!
First cruise on the Diamond princess and it was lovely. The ship was clean and the staff were very friendly and happy to assist with any request. Would recommend this short cruise and ship to anyone.
As one of just two cruise ships in the fleet built in Japan, the Diamond Princess is also something of a rarity. She can hold as many as 2,706 guests, and needs 1,100 staff to run at full capacity.
She has a maximum of 22 knots, is 952 feet long and has 18 decks and 700 balconies.
Destinations include ports around the country of her origin, visiting Kobe, Tokyo, Nagasaki and other Japanese ports. She also journeys to South Korea, Taiwan, Australia, New Zealand, and the Pacific Islands.
In another nod to her origins, the Diamond Princess boasts the world's largest open air Japanese baths, a feature only found on this ship. There are serene indoor and outdoor areas perfect for finding the ultimate in relaxation.
There are also four pools and six hot tubs, as well as an adults-only area for some peace and quiet. Pass the time at the nine-hole putting course, in the gym or in the library. You can even check out some of the fine artwork in the gallery, learn through the ScholarShip@Sea programme, watch a live show at the theatre, catch up on the latest movies at the outdoor cinema, or shop in one of the many boutiques.
You can even say your vows in the beautifully appointed Hearts and Minds Wedding Chapel.
Take your pick of 28 suites with private balconies, 186 mini suites with private balconies, outside cabins, inside cabins, deluxe oceanview rooms, family suites with interconnecting cabins, and outside cabins with private balconies. All together, there are 1,337 rooms available, and 27 of them have wheelchair access.
There are so many dining options on the ship you'll have to book a longer tour to enjoy them all.
For a traditional cruise meal, visit the International Dining Room where each meal is served at the same time and you will be served by the same waiter throughout the cruise. If a less structured itinerary suits you better, there are four 'anytime' restaurants where you can enjoy a meal when you're ready for it.
There are also speciality Italian, sushi, steak, and balcony dining options, as well as a range of more casual options such as a buffet, ice cream bar and pizzeria.