Thank you both. We now have a mini-suite on hold and will make the deposit tomorrow. First, forgive my huge typos above in which I mangled the sizes of the cabins. As you both know, it should have read 218 and 231 square feet.
We ended up with one of the smaller ones, but it's in a great location that should have little noise from above. (The size difference is not that significant, about the same area as our living room sofa.) And, as Richard says, we probably won't be in the cabin much given the ambitious itinerary and all the activities offered onboard. I'm not concerned about the location of the cabin's sofabed - we've had it before on other lines, and I'm not one to go out on the balcony at night (fear of heights). I would love to have a Penthouse, but it's not in the budget unless we don't want to cruise again that year.
I think some ports do VIP embarkation better than others. Boston is one of the better ones. But, as long as I get on the ship, that's all that matters.
The cruise is still more than a year away, but we are still very excited. I didn't mention this in my initial post - it is to celebrate our 20th wedding anniversary, that occurs that month. I know we'll be having some special meals onboard.