As some of you will recall, I’ve done a review of a Portenzo Composition Case for iPad 2 in the past, and was very impressed with it. So when I saw that Portenzo had a nice new lineup of cases for the iPad mini, I put my hand up right away to try out some review units.
The first one I received is the Alano for iPad mini. I’ve had it for several weeks now and have had a chance to use it a lot around my home / office and while out and about.
The Alano for iPad mini comes is made with a single piece of thick and very durable leather that should last a decade or more, at least according to the Portenzo promo video. Each case is handmade, hand distressed and hand softened by Portenzo in St. Louis, Missouri. Here are some of its notable features:
- Fits all models of iPad Mini
- Automatic Sleep/Wake feature – Just like the Apple Smart Cover!
- Hand sanded American Maple frames with Smooth radius corners for a truly unique look.
- Double-Glued elastic band won’t ever come undone!
- The elastic band covers the camera when the cover is closed.
- Optional Soft Seal Camera Access Port on the rear cover.
- Optional IntelliStand adds the versatility of more viewing angles to your case.
This case comes in 7 styles including Midnight Black, Indiana Journal, and the Old Book style that I chose for my review unit; as well as a selection of 7 colors for the case’s elastic strap.
The base price for the Alano for iPad mini is $99.95. You can choose to add-on a camera opening for around $5, a stylus compartment for around $10, and the Intellistand feature (which offers more viewing angles) for around $20.
— The leather on this case looks gorgeous, feels great, and even has that lovely smell of high quality leather. The distressing of the case is exceptionally well done and looks stunning.
— It can easily pass for a very nicely bound old book or notebook.
— The automatic sleep/wake feature works well and there’s also a ‘secret’ power button invoking spot right up at the top right corner of the iPad mini display while in the case. A press and hold on that spot will turn sleep or wake the iPad manually.
— The Alano’s handmade wood frame fits perfectly and holds the iPad mini absolutely securely. It’s also one of the best and easiest to use frames I’ve seen on any iPad case. It’s quick and easy to get the iPad mini in and out of the frame – which just adds to the appeal of using the case.
— The leather is flexible enough for the front cover to fold nicely behind when you’re using the iPad mini. The viewing angle in stand mode is good, and there’s a natural typing angle when just tucking the front cover underneath as well.
— Even the interior of the case is handsome.
Almost none to speak of. The case took just a couple of uses to get the automatic sleep/wake feature working nicely – and I wasn’t aware of the ‘secret’ power button access spot until I asked about it.
The Alano for iPad mini has lived up to and exceeded my high expectations for it. It’s a beautiful case that reeks of fine craftsmanship throughout and is a real pleasure to use.
If you like leather-bound book style cases, this is definitely one that’s worthy of a lot of consideration. It will definitely continue to get lots of use with my iPad mini.
You can see lots more detail including a demo video and place an order at the Portenzo product page for the Alano for iPad mini.
I’ve also got a Portenzo Composition Book case for the iPad mini that I’ll be trying out and reviewing here soon.
Disclosure: As mentioned above, Portenzo provided a review unit for this case. For information on our review policies please see our About page.