Notes: Deluxe family stateroom with veranda, with steamer trunk storage.
Space. As a family of 4 with 2 small children, we found this to be an excellent room, convenient to the shipboard activities we used the most but also quiet and secluded (within the bounds of being on a ship). We did not use the Murphy bed, but we did like having the extra space of the deluxe stateroom, as it enabled us to leave the couch made up as a bed for afternoon naps for our toddler, while still having a chair to sit in during other times of the day. The steamer trunk, closet, and various drawers provided more than adequate storage for all our things, and our empty soft-sided luggage fit under the bed quite easily. Note that we don't pack like some of the cruisers out there � so if you bring the kitchen sink and can't fit it in the cabin, that's your decision. The bathrooms were of perfectly adequate size as well, at least for normal sized folks. I'm 5'10�, 170 lbs, and while I could tell I was on a ship I did not feel cramped.
Location. For families with small kids who plan to spend a lot of time with the kids (as opposed to mostly putting them in the clubs all day) the location is ideal, one quick flight of stairs up to deck 9 with the drink station, ping pong and foosball tables, and all the pools. It enables you to go back and forth for quick changes of clothes, etc, quite easily. For adults traveling without kids, however, the forward section of the ship would provide more convenient access to the Quiet Cove adult areas (which we viewed with a certain amount of envy, despite the fun we were having with the children). The �secret� stairway next to 8094 is surprisingly handy for access to Topsiders and coffee in the morning. It's definitely nice to be able to run up and grab a little breakfast without having to walk the length of the ship, or to refill a coffee cup without making a ten minute trek. Other times of the day we didn't use the secret stairway all that much. Hall traffic was minimal, and although we took the stairs rather than the elevators (our attempt to battle the effects of the excellent onboard food service) it appeared that the aft elevators were considerably less used than those amidship. Views during port calls were fine, though this room is on the wrong side to see the action during the Castaway Cay stop. Our cruise was a transatlantic crossing, and though shipboard motion was noticeable it was never excessive or problem-causing, even though the cabin is at the back of the ship and located high up. We all found it soothing, actually.
Noise. Having neighbors on only one side is an obvious plus, and in our case we barely heard them at all. At most we heard very muted laughter a few times and it was rather pleasant as we became good friends with them over the course of the cruise. They were, however, considerate folks who probably didn't cause excessive noise, so I can't vouch for what the room might be like with noisy people next door � though that would apply to every room on the ship. Noise from Topsiders above, which we had worried would be a significant downside to this room, was nonexistent. I went upstairs and worked out where 8094 lies in relation to Topsiders, and it turns out to be underneath a small branch of the main dining room, with only one table and carpeted floor. We never heard a thing from above � no footsteps, no chairs dragging, nothing. During docking maneuvers the thrusters were distinctly noticeable, causing deep rumbling and some vibration � though undoubtedly less than in lower level rooms closer to the thrusters. And to those people who feel the need to complain about that sort of thing, I can only point out that a cruise takes place on a ship, duh. Overall, the sound dampening and noise level of this room were excellent.
About the only negative to this cabin is the solid walled veranda. As has been noted elsewhere if you are sitting in the outside chairs you cannot see through the wall and have to stand up to see anything other than the sky. Both of our kids (ages 2 and 7) had to stand on the chairs to see over the railing. Both my wife and I were ok with it, agreed that having fresh air and a private outside space was mainly what we wanted, but also that yes, if given a choice it would be better to have the plexiglass wall. There is also a security camera that comes into play when you stand at the railing, but it is not a factor while you are seated.
Nigel, the room steward, was excellent, professional and unobtrusive.
All things considered, this was a very, very pleasant cabin to occupy.