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on February 17, 2014
I'll be honest, and i'm shamed to admit it, but I spent days looking for a decent laptop/work bag that met the style/value/functionality paradigm I needed. I knew i'd be using the bag both in and outside of work so I didn't want something that looked polished and crisp, but I also didn't want something made of nylon with plastic clips and velcro. I feel that this Samsonite bag fits the bill for everything I wanted. The leather has a very soft touch, deep brown color. There is plenty of room on the inside to carry 2 or 3 books along with a laptop and some cables. There are two zippered compartments which I like so that when the flap is open, people can't see everything your lugging around. The hardware is heavy duty antiqued brass and has a solid feel. The strap seems fine, but I'll be looking at replacing the pad since it doesn't offer much padding, especially when you have the bag loaded up. If you're looking for a professional looking bag which looks good with a suit or a pair of jeans, buy this.
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on August 14, 2013
Received it within two days of ordering. Very good job Amazon.

The bag is a dark leather. Which is what I like. Very roomy on the inside. Will travel with it this week and will update this review upon my return. However, at first sight, I like the construction. The handle at the top looks well made. All the compartments are padded. That's a plus. The leather feels nice and I think will age very nicely.

There's an outside sleeve pocket in the back. You open the flap and there's the front pocket. There are two zipper slots. The front is large with laptop sleeve and three pockets in another compartment. Then the back compartment looks like you can keep a slim (my Macbook Air) laptop in that instead of the main compartment.

I like the bag so far. And for $86, it is a good buy. Samsonite also being a company I trust.

8/22/13 Update: I took it on a business trip. It has a lot of room for what I need. I did use the back zippered compartment for my MacBook Air. Put folders and books in the main zippered compartment.

The leather is very nice. Stitching is holding up very well. It's a great item and at a great price. Highly recommended.

12/16/13 Update: The messenger bag is aging nicely. Walked around Seoul in the rain with it and the leather held up well when it dried out. It still retained its soft and supple feeling. No issues with the zippers. No issues with the stitching or handle.

7/22/14 Update: The bag is holding up quite well. No damage to the leather after use. Zippers and straps are in good shape. I still recommend the item.
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on March 24, 2013
I couldn't decide between 2 very similar bags on Amazon, so I ordered both: the Kenneth Cole Reaction Luggage Show Business ($123.99) and the Samsonite Columbian Leather Flapover Case ($139.99). It took me about 5 seconds to decide that I preferred this one. To me, the $16 difference is negligible. In terms of size and pockets, both are about the same. I prefer the Samsonite for a few reasons:

1) The Samsonite leather was noticeably softer, which I prefer.
2) The Samsonite latches buckle/unbuckle smoothly and effortlessly. One of the latches on the Kenneth Cole felt stiff and required a little effort to release. This may be a design flaw, or I just got a defective Kenneth Cole.
3) The laptop compartment on the Samsonite was about 1/2 inch deeper. This allowed more of my 15inch MacBook to sit in the compartment.

I'd still give the Kenneth Cole high marks; however, the Samsonite is better for me.
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on July 16, 2015
I've bought the bag in December 2014, used it for half a year and now the strap is broken. I bought the bag because of the reviews, loved the bag while it lasted. Being an an engineer for 13 years in product design, I can tell you that there is a huge possibility of product design flaw. I'm writing this hoping that everyone can consider how you will use the bag before purchase.

The images shown in Amazon suggest that this bag is meant to carry laptops, however if this is your considered main use for the bag, I encourage you to look else where.I've used the bag to carry some notes (20 sheets at most), wallet, iPhone, iPad mini, spare battery and couple of wire. I never did use the bag to carry any laptop nor do I carry the bag every day. My strap broke due to the hook being worn out from cutting into the D-ring. Now the hook is detached and you can clearly see worn out marks in the D-ring as well. As you can see I do not carry very heavy items in the bag, I believe the bag itself is too heavy for the metal used for the hook and D-ring.

Frankly, I don't know which senario would I suggest the use of this bag, except for vanity. Hopely someone finds this review useful.
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on January 18, 2016
Nice. Like some others have written, I searched extensively for a nice looking bag that would be appropriate for business and casual use. AND, as some others have written, I narrowed it down online to this bag and the Kenneth Cole Show Business bag. They both looked as if they'd fit the bill. The difference in cost was about 20 bucks higher for the Cole bag, not enough to sway me either way, and I could not decide based on what I saw online, so I ordered both.
Comparing these bags side by side in person made it quickly evident that except for one minor cosmetic detail on the straps, the two bags are absolutely positively identical.
The look of the leather is similar in color, sheen (Nice matte finish) and grain, and the feel of the leather is equally supple. The buckles, snaps, interior pockets, dimensions... All the same. The handle of the Cole bag feels wider by a fraction. The padding in each bag's laptop compartment provides adequate protection. My MacBook Pro 15" fits nicely. Older, thicker PC based laptops will fit, but be snug.
I do wish these bags had straps for slipping over luggage handles, and that at least one of the small compartments inside had flap-covers, but these were not deal breakers for me. (UPDATE: On recent travels, I unbuckled the flap... The hole in the flap that accommodates the bag's handle to pass through, slipped perfectly over the handle of my luggage… Then re-buckling the flap provided a safe and secure tether to my wheeled luggage. Awesome!)
Both made in China. For what it's worth, the Samsonite has a 3 year limited warranty, and the Kenneth Cole has a lifetime limited warranty. Samsonite's warranty language is more clearly stated than Cole's warranty language, which is vague.
So I was going to save the 20 dollars and keep the Samsonite, when I revisited Amazon this evening to find the price of the Cole bag has been reduced to essentially the same price as the Samsonite. Based on the admittedly marginal difference in the handle thickness, the grain structure of this particular Cole bag, and it's longer albeit more-vague warranty, I'm going with the Kenneth Cole. Had the price not been reduced, I would have kept the Samsonite. Your choice may be a matter of whether you want to walk around with a venerable and respected name in luggage, or a more fashion-oriented name, stamped on the flap of your bag.
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on June 29, 2015
I've used the bag for just over 2 months. One of the 2 snaps / clasps began to be increasingly difficult to close (where you hear the "click") over time. That metal clasp has 2 rivets or screws that go into the leather. One of the 2 rivets has broken away from the leather, so the clasp is pretty much useless.

In checking the return policy I see I'm outside my 30 day return window. Well, that was about a 100 bucks wasted & a hard lesson learned to not buy a Samsonite again. Hope you learn from my lesson
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on May 27, 2017
I've used this daily for a couple years now, and it has held up exceptionally well. It replaced a Reaction brand one that had hardware failures. Grant you, I often put heavy loads in my briefcases, but the Samsonite has held up with no problems. Hardware seems more robust and better quality. Nice arrangement of pockets and compartments make this versatile. The leather seems to be surprisingly good quality. It's been under lots of airplane seats, lots of car floors, wet parking lots, etc and still looks good. The sticking and general construction are good quality and hold up well.

Overall, a very good value.
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on August 27, 2015
The zipper on my old knapsack broke last week, being 46 I decided it was time to "grow up" and get an adult bag to bring to/from work. Only been one day, but so far I am very happy with this bag. The color is perfect, I got the brown, not too light - a nice dark rich brown. Plenty of room for my laptop and even a second laptop if I wanted and/or my lunch and other items. Good price, adult, classy, professional, and great looking bag. Happy am I.
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on November 25, 2016
Looks great, sounds great (yes, sounds), smells great. Lots of space for multiple binders and files, compartments for organized storage, and great padding for protection of electronics. Don't know what the complaints about weight are all about - are there really people out there for whom a weight of maybe 1.5 or 2 lbs for strong, quality material including metal pieces and abundant padding for electronics that might cost hundreds of dollars is "too much" weight??? I will say that I see where some of the metal related to the shoulder strap is starting to wear, per some of the other reviews on here. I will be contacting Samsonite to see if they have any solutions and updating this review.
UPDATE: Since the initial review, I use this bag almost daily, and have taken it on several trips of long distance and duration. The bag is still holding up well and looks even better with a little "character" worn and scratched into it.
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on August 6, 2014
I was mixed over a few models of bags between Samsonite and Kenneth Cole, but I think the 300 over 5 starred reviews by fellow buyers was a major selling point for this briefcase.

I bought this as a business bag for travelling (zips and latches to keep the slippery hands away from my documents and belongings) and as a replacement for my other bag which is a lot less functional than this.

Pros :

1. Bag is not too heavy and I have managed to stuff all my accessories and laptop in without an issue.Plenty of compartments to keep things in order.

2. Functional easy-to-use clips hidden straps.

3. Able to fit all necessities for work (less the occasional lunch box)

Cons :

1. Strap is a little too short. I have it at the maximum and wish it could extend a little longer.

2. Bag is new but it looks like it has been in the warehouse for a good period of time. Leather looked a little dry, but I took care of that with some leather maintenance fluids. You need to take care when using leather products and a small $20 investment (leather moisturizers/cleaners) can go a long way in up-keeping your leather products.

3. Update 12 Aug 2014 - Bag is a little cumbersome on board a crowded peak hour train even when it is unslung.

4. Update 12 Aug 2014 - Dye bleeds when I cleaned it with leather moisturizer, worrying.

5. Update 11 Dec 2014 - Around 10mm of the rear document zip has broken out of the fabric. I do not overload the bag so I'm quite disappointed. Bag still holding well and I'm still loving it despite a few small flaws.
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