Official opening of World Chess Club Berlin

Jul 07, 2024Ilya Merenzon
Official opening of World Chess Club Berlin

The opening marks the launch of World Chess’ ambitions to reinvent the chess club culture in its entirety. The aim is to modernise the concept to fit more readily into mainstream society and function more as a social and collaborative centre. World Chess sees Berlin as an obvious location to debut this new and revised approach, given the cumulative factors of the substantial popularity of chess within Germany, and its vibrant café and bar scene.


The Club is located in the centre of the city on the popular street of Unter Den Linden, which starkly contrasts traditional chess clubs that have lately functioned out of multipurpose rooms. It will operate as a bar, event space, concept chess shop, coffee shop, and café and is hoped to set a new standard for the whole industry.


World Chess Club Berlin will also act as a hub, hosting chess events for the respective city as well as the rest of Europe. In addition, it will operate as the Armageddon Chess Series’ headquarters, with the 2023 series already being staged and filmed from its bespoke, purpose-built studio.


As the Berlin Club is part of the World Chess ecosystem, members of the FIDE Online Arena will get additional discounts and member-only access to a limited number of events. In keeping with World Chess’ aim to grow the sport and encourage people from all backgrounds, the Club is open to all with no need for a membership.


The Club will not only operate as a symbolically significant space for the chess community but is also visually captivating, standing to act as a physical landmark for the sport going forward. World Chess believes this is only the beginning of the chess club renaissance and intends to open further clubs around the world in the future.


Ilya Merenzon, Chief Executive Officer of World Chess, said:


“To date, chess has suffered from a lack of dedicated clubs and those that do exist are often very traditional, which can be intimidating for many. We wanted to build a club that is a symbolically significant space for the chess community, for both those living in and visiting Berlin.


‘Whilst technology has allowed the sport to grow virtually, we are also seeing a growing trend of people wanting to meet and play together, so we want to help facilitate and promote this immensely important social component through the Berlin Club.


‘The new club will play an important role in helping to bring chess out of the traditional stereotype and back into the modern world so that it can be shared and appreciated by all. The process of opening the World Chess Club Berlin has been very rewarding and we cannot wait to continue revolutionising chess clubs across the world in the future. Please do stop by if you are ever in Berlin and do let us know if you have a suggestion as to which city we should open our next club in!’

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