The World’s Most Expensive and Unique Chess Sets

Written by Carley D

Chess, the world’s most popular strategy game that has been played by millions all over the world and paved its way through history for over 1,500 years.

To learn as a beginner chess is a simple and not that difficult of a board game, the basic rules involved are easy for children to pick up and understand. But when it comes to mastering the game and becoming a champion in the big leagues, there is a wheelhouse of experience, tricks and carefully mapped out strategic plays needed to take home the first place winnings.

most expensive chess sets

The simplicity of the checkerboard and it’s pieces is all you need to play this game, it is a game that can be purchased at a simple and decent price from any local toy store, however there are some chess set’s out there that have been turned into a work of art, crafted out of the most expensive materials and decorated with gemstones and jewels. They are a cut above the rest and have a pretty jaw dropping price tag. Let’s have a look into some of the world’s most expensive and unique chess sets below:

J. Grahl Chess Set - $450,000

J. Grahl Chess Set - $450,000

First on our list is not only a unique and expensive board but it’s also a pretty heavy one too. The J. Grahl. Designed in 1972 by Jim Grahl for the Cole family and coming in with a total weight of 450 grams, this being because of the solid 14 carat gold and silver the set is made out of.

This board was designed with the aesthetic of 14th century Europe which is represented beautifully by the immense detail, period dresses and jewels that have been put into each and every piece. The material for the board itself is ebony wood that is handmade and embellished with sterling silver.

All those luxurious details and materials bring the price tag of this chess set to a hefty $450,000.

Art Of War - $750,000

Art Of War - $750,000

Sun Tzu’s Art of War is the most fitting theme for a chess set, if you are an avid chess player then there’s no doubt you have a copy of the book and have read it from cover to cover.

This elegant chess set was designed by Victor F. Scharstein, and has a distinct Asian influence. Each piece is handmade from solid gold and topped with ruby, emerald, sapphire and diamond details. The board itself is something to admire with the solid gold ebony wood, its legs and hinges carved out of, yes you guessed it, solid gold and decorated with more gemstone detail.

This jaw droppingly beautiful set will set you back a whopping $750,000!

Jewel Royale - $9.8 Million

Jewel Royale - $9.8 Million

The astonishing Jewel Royal is an incomplete and still in the works chess board that is set to stun the chess obsessed masses. The concept and dream is a dual project between jewellry design company Boodles and Jewel Royale. They have finished and created only one piece of the set which is the king, to diminish the misconceptions that spread across the internet of the board and project's existence. The king alone is made from 18 carat gold and has a price tag of $59,742!

When this chess set is complete it is rumored that the price is calculated at a hair raising total of $9.8 million!

Game Of Kings - $3 Million

Game Of Kings

Next on our list is one of the most unique boards you will ever lay your eyes on. The Game of Kings took two whole years to craft by many different artists around the world, weighs more than a ton and contains an astonishing 110 pounds of silver. The design of this board was inspired by ancient Aztec and Mayan civilization and has been exhibited in galleries and museums all over the world.

The king and queen pieces are crafted from black and red obsidian and have stunning detailed finishes made from 22 carat gold vermeil.

With the Aztec and Mayan influence the pieces on this board are unique and take on a different figure compared to the usual chess characters. The bishops are crafted as hunters, the knights as jaguars and the rook is molded after Tlaloc, the Aztec rain god.

The price of this beauty is estimated at a whopping $3 million.

Pearl Royale - $4 Million

Pearl Royale - $4 Million

The Pearl Royale has been created with nothing but regalness and glamor in mind.

It was designed and created by Australian jewel maker, Colin Burns who had the desire to embark on creating the world's most beautiful chess set and he did so in 2008.

The pieces are crafted from solid 18 carat white gold and over 510 carats of certified diamonds. The detail on this board and its pieces are beyond beautiful and hold an elegance that is out of this world. The heads are made from South Sea pearls and the king and queen are topped with AAA Ceylon Blue sapphires.

This is technically the most expensive chess set in the world coming in at a jaw dropping, wallet burning $4 million! This is of course until the Jewel Royale is completed and hits the market.