World Chess Grand Prix Opens in Geneva with a Black-tie Gala
ByEditorsJul 06 — 5:02 AM
World’s best chess players, bankers, diplomats, watchmakers and businessmen came together to celebrate the opening of the FIDE World Chess Geneva Grand Prix at the Four Seasons Hotel. Geneva is now looking forward to 9 days of intense chess battles which will possibly determine a winner of the series.
Celebrity swagger, beautiful mountains, and private banking have helped give Geneva a lead among jet setters. Now they are learning chess as the city is hosting the FIDE World Chess Grand Prix — a prestigious qualifier for the World Chess Candidates Tournament and the Championship Match.
The Opening Gala, held at the famous Four Seasons Hotel Ball Room, was an event of the day: the Mayor of Geneva, famous banking families, sports stars and businessmen mingled with ambassadors and United Nations representatives.
During his opening remarks, Ilya Merenzon, CEO of World Chess, the organizer of the Series and the Championship cycle, said that it’s a perfect time to introduce chess to Geneva and Switzelrand.
Black-tie Gala Opening of the Grand Prix started at 7PM at the famous Four Seasons Hotel in Geneva.
Opening Press Conference
FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov with guests
Alexander Mints, board member of EG Capital Advisors, one of the General Partners of the cycle, is all smiles when showcasing an S.T.Dupont pen, developed specifically for chess championships
Guests played some chess
Boris Gelfand of Israel will play Shakhriyar Mamedyarov of Azerbaijan in the first round.
Ilya Merenzon, World Chess CEO
The event took place in the Four Seasons Ball Room
Katerina Lagno, one of the strongest Russian women-grandmasters won the historic Moscow Blitz Tournament, beating her fellow Russian Olympic team members Alexandra Kosteniuk, Valentina Gunina and Olga Girya.
After a draw against Ian Nepomniachtchi, Teimur Rajabov won the tournament. One of the strongest players, Rajabov had not won a major tournament lately, but has shown phenomenal form in Geneva and managed to overpower some of top world’s players