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Bellagio Lateral Pouch Case

Sun Feb 20, 2005 - 5:45 PM EST - By Douglas Morse


When TreoCentral sent me four cases to review, I took a look at them and took the Bellagio case and put it aside, thinking this was the stupidest case I had ever seen; I put it aside to leave for last. I was very, very wrong.


The thing that impressed me about the Bellagio case is how useful it is. The Bellagio case is designed as a hip clip holster with a very strong, permanent rivet in the back. The plastic belt clip itself is nothing special and slides easily onto your belt. The case is made of decent black leather and has a soft lining. The Treo slides in horizontally and then a large flap clips the side. There are cut outs on the four corners but only two of those cutouts prove essential: one for the antenna and the other for the headphone jack. The case isn’t exactly form fitting, allowing the Treo to move around some, yet the device is still well protected because of a very soft padded interior.


Now here is the coolest thing. The clip allows for a full 360° rotation of the device. That means that while clipped to your hip, you can attach a headset or headphones with ease while the device is still holstered by swiveling it upside down. Other holster style cases do not offer this functionality. It allows it to swivel to adjust to various positions – slightly back while sitting, horizontal for easy access while standing or vertical to hide under a coat.

The belt clip itself clips pincer style to the belt. With one solid yank on the Treo, the clip wouldn’t hold -- so the owner of the Treo shouldn’t go swaggering down any high crime streets. I have heard that this type of swivel holster was invented so the old west gunslingers could still shoot while the gun was in the holster. It’s the sort of holster featured in Sam Rami’s The Quick and the Dead. Rumor has it gunslingers who used this type of holster lost a few toes if they fired prematurely.

According to Wyatt Earp, any sort of trick shooting soon got you killed. The man who took the extra split second to draw and properly aim did a fair sight better than gunslingers who ‘fanned’ their guns or tried to fire with two weapons. Note that the only holster of the swivel type that I could find these days is a ‘Trick Holster’ I’m sure there are some lessons for the user of Treo here and I’ll let readers ferret them out.


With a name like Bellagio and a pedigree from Italy, you’d expect the highest quality hand sewn leather. The leather seems fine, though not as nice as other cases I have used. The magnetic clip seems fine, but nothing to write home about. In my effort to test every possible doomsday scenario, I managed to not close the case properly, it spun upside down, and the Treo fell to the ground. This time it wasn’t protected by anything but fortunately I was pushing my son on a swing over a rubbery playground surface. The Treo bounced harmlessly.

The plastic belt clip is fair, though the nub that slides in is very solidly attached to the back of the case and makes the case ride a little further out than I’d like. The back of the case is very stiff, thick, reinforced leather. The best part about the physical case is the soft padded interior, which should protect your beloved Treo well.

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