Rob and I love having fish as pets. They are pretty low maintenance; don't care if you go away for the weekend or come home late, no need to walk them. We have two fancy goldfish at home (completely spoiled in a 20 gallon tank) and a beta on each of our desks at work.
I saw this goldfish in a vase in the holiday CB2 catalog. The classic Asian styling of the glass makes it really sophisticated and it would look perfect paired with a red beta fish.
As to whether or not it would make a good present...that was debated Oxford style in the living room last night. The final verdict: avoid messy animal welfare issues by giving a gift certificate for a beta from Petco instead of an actual fish.