It DID feel like a queen past her prime as well. In particular, the level of cocktail knowledge at the bar was not quite there. This is perhaps a minor thing, and for those who just want a gin & tonic, vodka & soda etc... or something neat, it is fine. Beyond that, basics like martinis, manhattans and old fashioneds were not correct. With the amount of money being spent, and the beautiful classical feel of the place, this was black eye.
The staff was fantastic and professional... this is the saving grace.
Also, the spa facility was not functioning correctly while we were there. The food was alright, far out shined by the grandeur of the space. That said, I know the economy is tough in Portugal, my guess is that the budget for the Palace is under duress as well.
The place itself was beautiful. The overall architecture, gilded rooms, furniture... it felt mostly magical and spectacular.