She sang on American Idol; he’s living proof of the American dream. Creative couple Krystal and Yegor Malinovskii steals the spotlight in summer’s latest looks.
Most of us view our childhood dreams as things to leave behind or move beyond, but Krystal and Yegor Malinovskii refused to relegate their dreamsto the realm of nostalgia. For Krystal, it was a love of music that brought her from Portland to Los Angeles, and for Yegor, it was a desire for education that took him from the Ukraine to Colorado. They each found their way, pursued their passions, and then, when the time was right, they found each other. She returned to Maine to be closer to family, and he arrived for work (no one else from his Texas-based company was willing to brave Maine’s weather). They met at the Old Port Sea Grill, and four years later, they were married in the backyard
of the grand and gracious Falmouth home they now share with their two young sons, Kingston, five, and Beckham, three.
Besides being a busy mom, Krystal is a singer—a two-time American Idol contestant— who shares her love of music daily through singing, dancing, and teaching her kids
about her favorite artists and genres. After recording a demo this summer, she plans to start playing more gigs around town. “If you’re given any kind of gift that is natural, and you know people will enjoy it, then it’s meant to be shared,” she says. “It’s not to be taken for granted.” She’s also a model, most recently having done a job for SandBaggers women’s golf shoes.
Yegor—who arrived in the United States with $300 to his name and minimal English—is now a partner and market president for New England at Berlin City, an automotive group that has four dealerships across Maine, as well as two each in New Hampshire and Vermont. In his role, he manages sales, service, parts, operations, and marketing. Acknowledging the less-than-favorable reputation of car salespeople, Yegor explains that the automotive industry, and his dealership in particular, has greatly evolved over the last 20 years. “Changing the public’s perception is almost like a flag that I carry,” he says. “How do we break through those stereotypes, how do we create a brand that’s much better and present a better option for consumers to buy a car?” In the seven years he’s been at Berlin City, he’s made a lot of progress.
Buying a car at Berlin City now looks pretty different from in the old days of haggling over impossible-to-understand prices. Just one way the dealership does this is to offer door-to- door vehicle delivery so customers never have to set foot in the showroom. Vehicle prices are based on market value and purchases can be made online or over the phone. (For those using this option, there’s a return policy.) To build goodwill from another direction, Berlin City donates to various public and nonprofit educational programs, helping to build a greenhouse at the Fairfield School in Saco and a racecar for an experimental learning class at Oxford Hills Middle School. “We believe in community,” says Yegor. “We believe in giving back.”
Visit the dealership, and you might notice something else that’s different: everyone—from sales assistants to general managers—wears a turquoise polo shirt. The look is approachable and lets employees know they’re all equals, says Yegor. “And fun is a big part of it, too.” It’s a change from the suits he worked in out West. “When I moved to Maine, I discovered a completely different look where I’m relaxed, comfortable, and simple,” he says.
Krystal has fun with her style, too. “I love to be able to look the part of “sophisticated mom,” but with some gorgeous heels and some rockin’ jewelry like a skull and crossbones ring— something that shows I don’t take anything too seriously,” Krystal says. “People might not understand why I’d want to wear six-inch heels in a winter storm, but I’d feel confident and gorgeous. I’m not afraid to feel those things because I know that I exude them from within.” Having traveled with Yegor across much of Europe, she’s also developed an appreciation for quality. “When you buy a fine product and take really good care of it, it can actually last a lifetime,” she says. But that doesn’t mean she’s immune to Target’s temptations: she’ll happily mix trendy accessories in with her investment pieces.
When the family isn’t enjoying time together—the foursome play in their pool in the summer, go for hikes, and watch movies together on Friday nights—the couple runs Yegor Malinovskii Photography, a creative outlet that’s turned into a full-fledged fine art photography business. Yegor’s photographs capture vivid, dramatic moments in nature: the northern lights glowing neon over Acadia National Park, lupines lit up by sunrise in a mountain meadow, ghostly sea smoke surrounding Spring Point Ledge Lighthouse. He’ll study weather patterns, wake up at 3 a.m., drive for hours, even shoot when it’s 15 degrees below zero—all for the rare chance of capturing an extraordinary natural phenomenon that only he will witness. “Most people will never get to see these places, especially the way Yegor sees them, in this time of day, in this type of light, in this setting,” says Krystal, who is his photo agent and who manages the business. Adds Yegor, “I’m always looking for that moment with special conditions. The one you chase for many nights.”
In life as in art, this couple is willing to pursue their passions no matter where that may lead them. They know who they are, move forward when others might hold back, and do it all with unwavering ambition and intention.