Around the Way: Long Beach with a Local
We asked the rad ladies behind OHK to identify five women they admire to take us on a spin around their neighborhoods. First up is Maly Mann, shot by her longtime boyfriend, Noah Sahady, over a three-day heatwave in her hometown of Long Beach, California.
There are cool girls, and there are girls who are just cool. Maly Mann is the latter. The Long Beach babe is one part painter, one part budding chef, one part model, and one part tomboy who never grew up. Her Long Beach, where she was raised and still resides, is a “conglomeration of charm, commotion, and so much beauty,” with memories around every corner.
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Mann now lives in the L.B. neighborhood of Carroll Park with her photographer boyfriend in a sweet mid-century home with original wood floors, open space, and plenty of good vibes. Throughout the day she drifts from her painting studio (her work: serene, color-rich abstracts) to the kitchen where she’s in the midst of launching a cooking blog, with frequent trips to a few favorite neighborhood haunts for a strong cup of coffee or a good vintage rummage.
Below, she shows us her side of Long Beach.
What’s your favorite part about living in your hometown?
“Ah! There are so many good things from being able to navigate around easily to knowing all the cool hidden pockets to the fact that the people in Long Beach are so kind, but my favorite part is being close to my family.
I grew up in an area that most people would probably like to avoid. But I’ve experienced so much here, and wouldn’t change a thing.”
Tell us about your neighborhood!
“I’m fortunate to be in a prime spot now: Carroll Park. If you were to tell someone in Long Beach that you live in Carroll Park you’d probably get a ‘What?! You're so lucky!’ Because it’s so lovely here. I hear it pretty often actually."
How’s the shopping?
“Carroll Park is just a block away from all the major vintage shops in Long Beach (called Retro Row). My favorite little one is La Bomba.”
And when you need a caffeine fix?
“My favorite—Lord Windsor—is actually just on the cut, it's close to Carroll Park but technically in Bluff Heights. The vibe is amazing and nothing feels contrived. It’s exactly what a coffee shop should be, simple with a lot of passion for a really good dang cup of coffee. My go-to drink is a Burundi pour over, there’s nothing else like it.”
Is it within walking distance from your place?
“On good days it is! I usually skate or bike there. The trek is definitely worth it for the coffee.”
Where else do you like to hang?
“Back when I was studying, I’d put in a good study session at Lord Windsor then take a walk down to Alamitos Beach, about four blocks away. The Colorado Lagoon also holds a very special place in my heart. During high school, it was the secret get-together place for me and my friends. We’d write poetry, share our art, or just meet up and make our plans for the rest of the night. A good amount of crying, laughter, and love went down in this spot. And even years later it still feels pure and innocent to me.”
“...the first time I tagged along surfing with [my older brother] I took my lucky Converse with me in my bag for good luck. The end result: A lot of wipeouts. But hey! The sunrise was amazing, so I thank the Chucks for that.”
- Maly Mann
How long have you lived in your house?
“Almost two years now! It's mid century with original hardwood floors—love the classic feel. My boyfriend and I both have separate work rooms: he has his office and I have my painting studio, which is open, light, and probably my favorite spot in the house after the kitchen, which is where I tend to spend the most time.”
So how did you get into cooking?
“It happened very naturally when I was young. My family didn’t have a lot of money, and almost every day my parents worked from early morning until late night. Seeing them was a rarity and my mom couldn’t always prepare food, so many days my siblings and I just cooked whatever was in the kitchen—that sparked something and now I can’t stop.”
Do you have a favorite dish to make?
“My parents are Cambodian, so I naturally tend to cook with Southeast Asian flavors. But I’m crazy for experimenting. Anything from a killer plate of aglio e olio to some chicken shawarma or a nice big bowl of shoyu ramen is always a winner.”
When you’re knocking around the neighborhood, what’s on your feet?
“A good ole pair of Chucks. I’ve been stuck on the Converse Chuck 70 lately. The sneaker is so versatile, you can wear them up or down. Even though my pair is ripped to shreds and probably not up to sneaker standards, I’d still wear them everyday.”
What do you wear your Chucks with?
“Chucks go great with everything but you can usually find me wearing them with vintage Wranglers and a white tee.”
Do you have any great sneaker memories from your youth?
“Oh man, I’ve basically lived in Chucks since I was a toddler, so I have had some pretty wild memories. But I’ll never forget the time I went out for my first surf with my brother. I have four sisters and one brother, so I was always the little ‘brother’ in a sea of sisters whether he was teaching me to skate or play the guitar. I was 14 and my brother was 24, and the first time I tagged along surfing with him I took my lucky Converse with me in my bag for good luck. The end result: A lot of wipeouts. But hey! The sunrise was amazing, so I thank the Chucks for that. And I never told him that I’d brought my lucky Chucks with me. I was trying to seem like a tough girl.”
Written by Kelly Lack. Photos by Noah Sahady.
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