Yeah, I have to agree that I hate the fact that it is based on IE7 and I don't care too much for skins. Other than that though I like it.
It looks somewhat cramped at first but thats nothing a little customizing cant fix. This is what mine looks like now.
It's got thngs that firefox and IE7 don't that I use all the time. Here are some of my favorites:
-Url Alias (You can type "gg" instead of "google.com")
-Mouse Gestures (Hold down the right click and drag to the right to go back a page, also many others.)
-The seach bar can highlight, find, or google depending on what you click.
-You can open a blank tab, home page tab, or currnet page tab with the little drop down menu next to the button. (The button itself can be programmed to whichever you want.)
-You can stack or cascade tabs like they are windows.
How 'bout them apples?
edit: oh yea I forgot, not sure if its the same as firefox but if you right click the toolbars you can choose bookmarks bar.