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Chris and Albie Manzo at their Hoboken apartment.
Posted: Thursday September 1, 2011
By Heather Zwain - (201) Magazine

Whether they're appearing on television or lounging at home, what you see is what you get with Albie, 25, and Christopher Manzo, 22. Down-to-earth, friendly and not the type to take themselves too seriously, the brothers discuss their personal style, their time on The Real Housewives of New Jersey, their new show, Boys to Manzo, their family and their real jobs.

From first sight, the Manzos' Hoboken apartment instantly conjures up images of college life. Boasting a fraternity vibe of sorts, with mismatched furniture, random artifacts (such as a throne and a knight in armor) and bare white walls (except for a step-and-repeat on one) makes it clear that decorating is not their forte or top priority.

"The interior of our apartment is all over the place," Albie says. "The walls are plain because it is too much of a hassle to get clearance from everyone when camera crews film here. We originally wanted a photo booth but instead hung up a step-and-repeat and take a Polaroid picture of everyone who comes here." The Manzos share their three-bedroom apartment with their best friend, Greg Bennett, and his dog, Deloris.

When it comes to his personal style, Albie can almost always been seen wearing a button-down shirt with a pair of jeans or a blazer and T-shirt with white sneakers. "I don't like when the sleeves of my shirts are below my elbows and I very rarely wear shorts or sweatpants," he says. "I'm not complicated but I don't like change. I have to be mindful not to repeat outfits on TV."

From one extreme to the other, Christopher is not concerned about what he wears in public. "I like color, whereas Albie is more into wearing black and white," he says. "I have Foot Locker T-shirts in every single color." He adds,  "people's opinions are far off my radar, especially on my wardrobe. When I'm relaxing, you can tell I'm not trying to impress anybody and when I'm dressed up, I'm really dressed up."

Christopher can be seen wearing anything from button-down shirts, polos and casual T-shirts to Hugo Boss suits. "People say I dress like Bill Cosby because I wear argyle sweaters," Christopher says. "I wear whatever I feel like."

Perhaps the one thing the brothers have in common when it comes to their wardrobe is a very special bracelet from Yanina & Co., which their parents designed and gave them on Christmas one year ago. "The bracelet represents all five of us as a family unit – our mom, dad, Lauren, Christopher and me," Albie says. Although they live on their own now, both Albie and Christopher go home often and still maintain their close ties with their mother, Caroline. "Our relationship is a little different because we don't see each other every day," Albie says.

When it comes to work, these two are all business. They work alongside their uncle Chris Laurita (who also appears on RHONJ) for his company, New Star Group. "We represent unique and high-end brands that we believe in and take care of their distribution, launch and sales," Albie says. The Manzo brothers have worked especially hard on the blk. water (black water with fulvic acid) and Levendi wine (Albie's favorite wine) brands. "If blk. didn't work," Albie says, "we wouldn't put our names behind it just for a paycheck." The water is sold in numerous Hoboken and New York City locations, as well as on amazon.com and in A&P, Whole Foods Market and Wegmans.

Changing gears to their other job, reality television, the Manzos talk about fellow reality stars their age. "I respect the Jersey Shore kids because they are just being themselves," Chris says. "You can always tell when people are playing it up for the cameras," Albie adds. "Attention is the most dangerous drug on the planet."

The brothers' new bravotv.com show, Boys to Manzo, has been an instant success. The show is all about their life in Hoboken. "We are three of the most opposite guys on the planet, almost like a modern-day Three's Company," Albie says. "There is no plot," Chris adds. "This show is a lot more real life."

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