While Dawn cruises out of Tampa in late 2013 had embarkation problems, we did not experience any at all - and the previous cruise arrived on time and debarked without any problems or delays. It was just the two of us and we got a fairly inexpensive upgrade to a Family Suite with Balcony forward on deck 12. Our other option was one of the suites at the very front of the ship on deck 6 and we are glad we made the choice of 12028.
We enjoyed the Dawn, its crew and our cruise very much. One tip - fog can be a problem sailing into Tampa (I assume ports like New Orleans and Houston are similar) and we had that problem on our last night and debarkation morning. We had a good idea fog was a potential problem before midnight but decided to leave our luggage out for the porters - which was a mistake. We were about 3.5 hours late getting into the dock due to the fog and it took another 2 hours before those who had checked their luggage could get off the ship. Those who could walk off were able to leave the ship about an hour after we docked - so next time we will keep our luggage with us if we see any indication of fog.
Cabin pros: very large but I think it would be very tight for 6. There is a fold down (Murphy) bed and a sofa bed plus a king bed. There were fold-away walls that could be used to separate the king bed from the rest of the room at night - which we did not use. The bath has a shower and tub - both very nice - and two sinks. Storage was also great for two - would be adequate for 4 and very tight for 6. Because its on deck 12, it is close to the pools and Cagney's for breakfast. We were warned that the hallway might be noisy because the small meeting rooms were across the hall but that was not a problem. We could get to the mid-ship and stern elevators to reach other decks (e.g., deck 7 for main dining etc.) by walking through the pool area and Garden Café on deck 12.
Cabin cons: there is no cover on the balcony and so little shade unless the ship and sun are positioned just right. Even in late January, it was too sunny and too warm at certain times of the day. Also, with the pool deck above, you get a good dose of the music - which can be good or bad depending on how much you like what is being played. Privacy was not a huge issue for us, but there were people walking by and looking down at us occasionally from Deck 13 above and the adjacent balconies are also not completely blocked off. We had no problems using the Internet from the within the Internet Café, but did not get a good and consistent signal in 12028.