Nordace Siena Smart Backpack Review - The Best Everyday Backpack?

Orlaigh Magennis
Written By:
Orlaigh Magennis
Last Updated:
October 6, 2023
Looking for the ultimate everyday bag? The Nordace Siena Smart Backpack is an excellent choice with many exciting smart features and minimal design.
Nordace Siena Smart Backpack Review

Are you looking for a new smart backpack for your everyday life?

Today, I’ll be reviewing the Nordace Siena Smart Backpack and talking about different aspects of it.

It’s a stylish 19L backpack with an anti-theft pocket, laptop compartment, USB port, and other great features.

But should you get it? Is it the bag for you?

I’m going to discuss details like the build quality, comfort, and who I think it’s for.

Hopefully, this will help you decide if the Nordace Siena Smart is right for you!

Rating: 9/10

Let’s go…

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Who exactly is Nordace?

Nordace is best known for making unique and smart travel backpacks.

With the goal of allowing people to indulge in everyday adventures in style, they prioritize craftsmanship above all else.

With that said, Nordace backpacks are made to adapt to both city life and the outdoors, which makes them ideal for day-to-day wear.

The founder, Tony, was inspired by his real life and the need for a functional backpack that’s well-organised and smart.

To ensure quality, Nordase works with BSCI-accredited manufacturers and makes sure that every detail is paid attention to.

Even better, they use only microfiber vegan leather that is durable and eco-friendly, especially compared to animal leather.

Nordace Siena Backpack woman holding with front handle

Nordace Siena Smart Video Review

Where can you buy the Nordace Siena Smart Backpack?

The best place to buy the Nordace Siena Smart Backpack is directly on their website.

This is mainly because shipping is free for orders over $49, even if you have an international address!

It’s great because not a lot of brands offer free international shipping.

Not to mention that they have frequent offers and promotions, so make sure to keep an eye out for those.

Nordace also allows for exchanges and returns within 30 days of purchase, if for any reason you’re not satisfied with the product.

You can get the Nordace Siena Smart Backpack here
Nordace Siena Smart Backpack Review

Quick overview: Technical Specifications

  • Price: $165 (currently off to $109.99)
  • Weight: 0.88 kg (1.9 lbs)
  • Dimensions: 42 x 29 x 16 cm
  • Color Options: black, beige, blue, dark green, gray, pink, red, aqua, khaki
  • Warranty: 
  • Capacity: 19L

Who should get this backpack?

This backpack is great for anyone looking for not only a literal smart backpack but also the aesthetics of it…

The Nordace Siena is well put together with a sleek and modern design. It’s especially perfect for those in business, commuting to work, and in school.

The anti-theft features will ensure that all your belongings and devices remain safe.

Who should not get this backpack?

This backpack isn’t for those looking for a transformable backpack that you can adapt for long travel periods.

Yes, you can pack this backpack up should you wish to use it from time to time as a travel backpack. It has smart features that work well for a short trip, such as a city break, but I wouldn’t rely heavily on it for extended adventures or an active lifestyle.

Nordace Siena Smart Backpack Review

I got the Nordace Siena Smart Backpack in beige, and one thing I love about this backpack is that it comes in a huge range of colours. From neutral ones like black and grey, to pink, red, aqua, and more.

I tend to opt for darker bags so am regretting going for the lighter one. But it does brighten up my outfits, so that’s grand!

The Siena Classic is a collection from Nordace. In addition to the smart backpack, there are packing cubes, wash pouches, and even a weekender bag.

I’m hoping to compare and contrast their other backpacks in the future! Especially as I believe this one is a bit outdated, though, of course, still serves a great purpose at an affordable price.

Overall, the Siena Smart Backpack is surprisingly spacious’

How well-made is the Siena Smart Backpack?

how well made is the siena smart backpack

In terms of look and appearance, I found the Siena Smart Backpack to be very well-made and high quality.

There are some leather accents throughout the bag. For example, here on the logo and the zippers, which add a gorgeous premium feel.

The material on the main body makes some crinkled sound when the bag is empty and you move it about, but I feel like that’s because of the water-resistant material inside.

This makes it so easy to wipe down and keep the interior clean.

The outside is also waterproof!

The straps are great and feel like they’d last longer than other brands because the padding actually runs throughout the length of the straps.

The backpack holds its shape well even when unpacked, which is nice and handy as you can rely on it to stand up.

Now the thing is, there is a procedure to cleaning this bag, and because I got it in beige, dirt tends to show up after compared to darker colours.

(This turned out to be annoying because I ended up being scared of getting the bag dirty, which was why I chose to take the Tropicfeel Hive for my weekend away to London…)

I notice that the bottom of the bag gets dirty faster, which is probably because you would set them down on floors and surfaces more. However, I do like the extra padding around where you store your laptop.

Finally, a detail that I do like is the small black loop in addition to the regular top handle that lets you hang your backpack up.

This is great because using the top handle, which is what most backpacks only have, to hang a heavy load usually wears it out faster.

How comfortable is the Siena Smart Backpack?

how comfortable is the siena smart backpack

I’d say that this backpack is pretty comfortable all around.

The shoulder straps have breathable padding and are so comfortable. They’re slim and curve around the chest area. 

I would’ve loved a bit more give as I like wearing my backpacks right up my back these days.

One detail I just love is the thumb loop on the straps, which feel soft and make it so easy to adjust the straps.

Plus, the excess material where you pull from to get the main straps in position has a little black clip so you can then store them away. I thought this was a lovely touch!

The back padding is also very comfortable and I have no complaints about it.

The only thing would be that there’s no built-in sternum strap, which could’ve provided extra support for when you’re packing it full.

What makes the Nordace Siena Smart a great backpack?

1. Front compartment with organisation

Nordace front compartment

The first main compartment runs down about halfway. This is a top-loading backpack so just be smart with packing and put the thing you need most to the top.

I love how the zips here are kind of hidden, although note that they’re still exposed, so be careful when storing valuables in here.

The front pocket has two sections. On one side is a microfiber pocket that blends into the bag, which is great for placing smaller items like your phone as it saves it from flapping about inside.

Then you have the key lash. I like that this is on the front as you then have the ability to swing the bag around and unclip keys or whatever you might have hanging here.

(I know with the Siena 2 this is a retractable key lash which I would probably use more of).

You can feel the padding in this first compartment, so you know that your belongings will be well protected.

There are also some laminated pockets inside and smaller padded compartments.

All in all, perfect for keeping everything well organized.

2. Laptop back compartment

Siena Smart Backpack laptop compartment

The back compartment is spacious and large with no extra pockets or anything.

It’s well-padded and can fit up to a 16-inch laptop, though if you have a smaller one (mine is 11 inches) it might shift around when moving.

There’s enough padding here to protect your device.

The fact that the space for your laptop is a whole compartment with zippers and not just a pocket can be a good or bad thing depending on your preference.

Personally, I’m not the biggest fan, but I can see how it might appeal as it keeps it separate from your other stuff.

3. Anti-theft pocket

Anti theft pcoket

This backpack also has great anti-theft features, namely the hidden pocket under the luggage slit at the back.

You can use this to store your phone, passport, cards, or important documents. It runs horizontally and is a nice size as it’s not too big or too small.

The zips are big enough should you want to add on your own padlock to add more security. 

4. USB charging port

Siena Smart Backpack USB

Another unique feature of the Siena Backpack that also makes it smart is the external USB port.

It blends very seamlessly with the bag while still being functional.

However, not that you have to place your own power bank inside the bag!

5. Great city backpack for travel

nordace sienna smart backpack citybreak

This Nordace bag is suitable for travel, especially for city breaks and weekend trips.

It works well on its own for a few days’ journey or you can pair it with a suitcase and use the luggage strap.

It fits nicely in the seat in front of you on a flight, even when fully packed.

Not to mention that there are external locks on the straps where you can attach things if you want to.

6. Stretchy water bottle pocket

Stretchy water bottle pocket on nordace siena

The water bottle compartment is another thing I LOVE about this bag.

It can fit a 1L bottle and fits my 500ml one perfectly.

The pocket also doesn’t run down to the bottom of the bag. So, say, if you have a metal water bottle and are setting down the bag in a quiet office, you won’t hear a loud clang.

It’s a small detail but one I can appreciate…

Is Nordace Siena Classic or Siena II better?

I haven’t had the opportunity YET to test the Siena II but from what I can tell, it’s not much different.

It’s bigger in size, has an updated USB port, and is a bit more of an updated version of the Classic. 

I think the Siena I still performs and serves a good purpose and is ideal if you are looking for a smaller compact smart backpack.

Is the Nordace Siena Smart Backpack Waterproof?

Yes, the main fabric of this bag is water-resistant. It can withstand light spillage and drizzles, but I would still be wary of leaving it out in the rain.

Cons of the Nordace Siena Smart Backpack

Moving on to things I liked less about this backpack…

I’m not a huge fan of the zippers as they’re quite chunky, but this is more about appearance rather than performance.

I have seen comments stating over time they become weak and less flexible in movement. Thus far they have been grand, though.

The Nordace Siena Smart Backpack is also not designed for an active lifestyle or long travels, mainly because of the lack of ergonomics and back support.

It’s just a typical backpack with no lower, upper, or breathable padding and materials. This means if you’re sweating, the back of this bag will soak them up…

I’m also always looking for a gym bag but no, I wouldn’t use this to hit the gym.

Not only is it too ‘smart’ for the gym, but I would have it ruined as it’d be hard to handle gently.

For example, with the Patagonia and Stubble & Co bags, the materials are easy to wipe off if I get chalk on them. But with this one, it feels like it would be too much effort to clean.

And also, this Nordace bag isn’t machine washable.

Nordace Siena Smart Backpack: Performance over time

Here are my impressions in bullet points after using the Siena Smart Backpack for the first time, and three weeks later.

First use:

  • Well-structured design that holds its shape well
  • Great padding throughout the shoulder straps
  • Stylish, chic, with great colour options
  • Perfect for work life, minimal in its organisation but enough space to pack smart 

After 3 weeks:

  • Continues to hold its shape
  • No real back support, but enough padding on the shoulder straps to help with comfort 
  • Very stylish backpack, colour is great but easy to get dirty. I would maybe opt for a darker colour if this is something you are worried about
  • Great for daily life and commute to work: smart features and anti-theft pockets, but would not use for long or intense travels

6 Month Review

  • Continues to hold it's shape and has a great structure
  • The comfort level remains, not noticeable due to the strap mesh cushion
  • Remains to be a great reliable backpack for a day to day stylish backpack
  • With the lighter colours you can see the dirt formulating a lot more
Siena Smart Backpack Review after 6 months

Overall verdict: Are Nordace Bags worth buying?

Nordace backpack review

Okay. You’re probably wondering whether I think the bag is worth it.

Should you buy the Nordace Siena Smart Backpack?

My answer to that is yes!

It’s not a perfect backpack but I can still highly recommend this one, especially as a city break bag.

Overall, the Siena Smart Backpack is fabulous for what it is directed towards—stylish, chic, affordable, and lasting.

This product is on sale at the time of writing, and I’d recommend checking out their other bags too if you prefer a larger size.

With that said, at less than 1kg, the Siena Smart is super lightweight and I can’t rally fault it for what it’s worth and its purpose!

You can get the Nordace Siena Smart Backpack here

What else does Nordace sell?

Siena II Smart Backpack

The Siena II is basically the newer, upgraded version of the Siena Classic. It is slightly larger and heavier and features the Nordace Connect II 3-In-1 USB port. It also comes with several added features such as a sternum strap, retractable key leash, and RFID blocking card slots.


If you prefer tote-style bags, Nordace has quite a few to choose from. Their totepacks are two-in-one in that you will get a backpack and tote bag from the same product! This is great if you want a versatile bag for work, commuting, and going out.


Other than bags, Nordace also offers a few products in the apparel category. From merino wool socks and all-weather sneakers to daily T-shirts for both men and women.

Nordace Siena Alternatives

Matein Travel Laptop Backpack

If you’re thinking about this smart style with a USB port, anti-theft features, then this is an affordable but long-lasting option. It has great support on the back, it is slightly bulkier and not as stylish but still worth a look.

Here’s my full review!

Nomatic 15L Lite Pack

This is a higher-end product and doesn’t have smart features, but it is practical, well-structured, simple, and sleek. I’d recommend this one for business and short travels.

Knack Bags Series 2

The Knack Bags Series 2 is the perfect backpack if you want something geared specifically for travel and adventure. It’s expandable up to 39L, has tons of organisation, and is still suitable for work life.

Have you ever used this bag?

Comment and let me know below!

Check out some of these other reviews:

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Some images courtesy of Deposit Photos.
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