Have the Palermo PM and am pretty happy with it. It holds it's shape whether you put a little or a lot stuff inside. Aside from the cel phone pocket, it has 3 handy side pockets, so no need for a purse organizer. It's a good everyday size and for me, big enough to carry a few extra things for traveling. With the zipper, no fear of things spilling out when you place it on those TSA belts for security check, and the long strap makes it easy to hoist it over the shoulder when you need your hands free.
I'm petite though, so I have no problem with the strap length whether I use it over the shoulder or cross-body, but some people have found it too short. And the Palermo actually looks better in real life , then it does in photos.
Tried on the BH when I bought the Palermo. I like the style, but I was really looking for a bag with a zipper. Also noticed that you can't put it over the shoulder with a coat on.
Check out the clubhouses for more feedback and pics (also look for the Palermo modeling pics thread).
For the cost, you could have a BH plus a bandeau for less than the cost of the Palermo. Just a thought. I recently got the BH and am enjoying her a lot. I'm not finding the open top to be an issue at all.
i love my bh- very much- and it is VERY functional. i saw the palermo pm irl just last week- and i loved it- it's a bit more'stylish' than the bh, but i think it's smaller/will hold fewer items. SO, imo, it depends on how much you need to carry and if you like simple or more 'design'! can't go wrong with either one!
Try both on at the boutique if possible, that usually makes deciding on a bag pretty easy for me. As one other person said, you really have to see the Palermo in real life to appreciate it. I saw one for the first time the other day and I LOVED it!