We just got back from a great cruise to Alaska. This is our family's 6th cruise and our 3rd on RCL. I still think RCL is the best overall for a family. While neither the food, service, entertainment, or cabins are individually the best, as an overall experience -it works.
Embarkation was very easy. I also recommend coming into Seattle the day before you set sail. We arrived from the East Coast on Thursday morning and had the rest of the day to explore Seattle (Space Needle and Pikes Place Market) as well as adjust to the time difference. We were asleep and cozy at the Renaissance Marriott downtown before 9:30 pm. It would have been a shame if this was our first night onboard the cruise. Friday morning we leisurely hung out and boarded about 12:30-there were no lines and we walked right onboard.
For the first time, we had 2 cabins. Myself and my 15 year old daughter in one and my husband and my 12 year old son in another. Both cabins were fine and it was nice to have the extra space and not cramp all 4 of us together. The beds and sheets were very comfortable. My husband and son said their cabin steward was fine however, my daughter and I had MaryLou and she left a lot to be desired. One of my favorite things about a cruise is the extra service and attention you usually receive and this was not the case. We didn't see her at all for the first two days and she barely greeted us the rest of the week. We did have clean sheets/towels but none of the VIP treatment that is usually evident. Maybe we have been spoiled in the past.