Princess Diana, who returned Friday from her three-day visit to New York, won praise from British newspapers for making it a success, but some said the city expected a combination of superstar and girl next door.
"The Big Apple Goes Bananas Over Princess," the Sun tabloid crowed in a headline. The Daily Mail called her the "Queen of New York" in glowing coverage.Some papers reported cool spots in a warm reception, and one said Americans are over-eager and don't understand real royalty.
"Americans love a star with a generosity that is not quite British," Charles Laurence wrote in the conservative Daily Telegraph.
"They are imbued with an egalitarian streak that demands their stars be as human as the boy or girl next door.
"This creates a sense of impatience that the royals insist on the protocols of address and seniority even `off-screen' and a refusal to accept that in such delicate matters as love and marriage they are different from that boy and girl next door."
He and other British reporters said Americans had asked whether making the trip alone meant Diana and was having marriage problems with her husband, Prince Charles, heir to the British throne.
That sort of speculation was front-page news in Britain for a time last year.
The Telegraph gave first honors for what it called royal exploitation to a shop that displayed "crude" mannequins of the royal family with boxes for heads.
To The Times, Diana's reception was "hot and cold" and interpreted critical reports as anti-British. "While small crowds of fans gathered to cheer and socialites gathered for eleventh-hour tickets" to a reception, it said, "others were declaring their distaste for royal fuss."
"New York's welcome for the princess veered to the extremes for which the city is famous," the august journal pronounced.
Reports in most papers ooohed and aaahed over both Diana's poise and the fans who praised her glamour or waited for a quick glimpse.
"Leaving Prince Charles behind on her first visit to New York, she enchanted hardened New Yorkers and turned thousands of ordinary Americans into avid royalists," the tabloid Daily Mail said. It printed a picture of Diana with the caption "Instant hit."