Having recently been informed about the existence of Royal Chess Mall (RCM) (reading an article in Chess.com and then watching relevant videos on YouTube), I started exploring the company's webpage. After admiring a few chess sets of their collection, I immediately realised that the page was so well structured and updated in such a professional way that it was impossible for the visitor not to find all the necessary info about their products. Not only do they mention King’s height, but also the accurate dimensions of all the pieces -even the base diameters- in inches and centimetres, and many other info, accompanied by many close up photos revealing all the details of the crafted pieces. It was impossible to have any questions unanswered.
So, being positively surprised, I decided to order directly from RCM’s webpage the ‘1849 Jacques Cook Staunton Collectors Chess Set – Ebony Wood and antiqued boxwood – 3.75’’ an all time favourite of mine. After that surprises kept coming one after the other…
The set was picked up by DHL from Armitsar India (RCM’s location) on Thursday 15 February 2024 and was delivered to me in Greece on Wednesday 20 Feb 24, way faster than was initially estimated! I didn’t opt for the shipment via Indiapost since the delivery time would be at least 20 days, the tracking difficult and the custom’s procedures time consuming. Although I had to pay an additional shipping cost, since the town I live is characterised by DHL as remote (RCM mentions this on the shipping info), it was worth it, because they did all things required for customs’ clearance and without having to pay any import taxes or extra fees.
The chess set recieved was professionally packed in a sturdy waterproof box and all the pieces were individually ‘‘nested’’ in a thick foamy material successfully preventing any kind of damage. A chess pouch was also included in the box as a thank you gift from the company.
Taking each piece out of its packaging and meticulously examining it, I was left speechless time after time, admiring the high level of RCM artisans’ craftsmanship and their attention to details. All the pieces were spotless, a totally flawless chess set with fantastic finishing! The details on the Knights are stunning with dynamic lines. I believe that there is no other better chess pieces’ colour combination than that of ebony and antiqued boxwood. The set looks way better compared to the photos on RCM’s webpage and the feel of the weight on the hands is just remarkable! One cannot go wrong with this classic chess set. IMO 3.75’’ is the sweet spot for a chess set.
RCM’s professionalism was such that the same day of the delivery I was sent an email, informing me about the arrival of the product and asking me if I had any kind of complaints.
First time to have such an excellent buying experience from abroad!
A huge ‘thank you’ and congratulations to all the personnel of RCM, who made a dream of mine come true in the most positive way!
PS. The chessboard’s squares on the photos I've posted are 5cm (RCM correctly proposes at least 5.5 cm)
Exact match to photos.
Piece of art, jewelry work.
A design that surpasses all other examples of St. John Pre-Staunton Calvert that I have seen online. An amazing modern interpretation, where the boxwood and ebony are incredibly fitting. I tested the ebony, it's real. Price for quality and value needs no comment.
Take moer than an hour (I 'm not joking) to enjoy the figures on the first day. And for the second day, take your time also.
This is my third purchase from Royal Chess Mall, my second 3.75-inch, 1849 Jacques Cook Staunton but in boxwood and bud rosewood; I assume padauk in most cases. Please read the review of my antiqued boxwood and ebony set (https://royalchessmall.com/products/1849-jacques-cook-staunton-chess-pieces-only-collectors-set-ebony-wood-3-75) before proceeding.
Basically the same can be said for this set from the expert carving of the knights to the precise and consistent turning of the remaining pieces by talented artisans. Though the contrast between boxwood and bud rosewood is not as dramatic as antiqued boxwood and ebony, there is no wood for individual pieces more strikingly beautiful than bud rosewood. Only amboyna burl, often used for inlays in high-end, custom-made pool cues, is more eye catching, but the wide color variation makes it inappropriate for chess pieces.
As with the antiqued boxwood and ebony, this set is an excellent choice for tournament play as seen in the photo. Opponents may object to bright red lacquered pieces (I wouldn’t), but you’ll receive few complaints with the deep, rich colors on display here. Okay, I imagine some players may, but you can’t please everyone.
Lastly, every piece was perfect right out of the box, and as with the other two sets a pleasure to unwrap from their protective foam strips.
Five stars for the 1849 Jacques reproduction in boxwood and bud rosewood! Five stars for the artisans at Royal Chess Mall!
Though not as towering and majestic as the 4.5-inch, 1849-50 Leuchars Cook Staunton lacquered in ivory & crimson previously reviewed, the 3.75-inch, 1849 Jacques Cook Staunton in antiqued boxwood and ebony is no less a masterpiece. I don’t think any two woods go together better on the chessboard than antiqued boxwood emulating an aged patina and deep, black ebony.
Regarding individual pieces, of all of the sets I own it sports the most aesthetically pleasing knight with a traditional, lightly serrated mane and remarkably expressive muzzle. It is expertly carved by the artisans at Royal Chess Mall; I have seen none finer. Lathe turning from the king to the last pawn is first rate as well. The uniquely concave, curvilinear rook from base to turret I find particularly attractive compared to straight-stemmed versions.
In my opinion, this set is more practical for tournament play than a 4.5-inch set. Due to the wide bases, some players may opt for a 2.375-inch square board. However, my photo reveals the set fits nicely and looks great on this 2.25-inch square curly maple and walnut board. Unfortunately, this particular board with its wide frame cannot be purchased; it was made in 1981 by my best friend as a Christmas present.
Lastly, I must mention that this set was ordered through Amazon and arrived with seven (7) of the seventeen (17) boxwood pieces a dark yellow bordering on orange. In other words, it was an “imperfect” set not advertised as such by Amazon. However, Royal Chess Mall made replacement pieces after I returned the darker ones with a lighter control pawn, and they did so on their dime. As you can see from the photo, the antiqued boxwood pieces are beautifully matched. Excellent service by a business who makes things right for the customer.
Please note my next review will be on the same 1849 set but in boxwood and bud rosewood.
Five stars for this 1849 Jacques reproduction! Five stars for customer service!
Meine Mikhail Tal - Figuren heute ausgepackt. Verpackung war sehr gut, keine Beschädigungen, die Figuren sind genau wie auf den Fotos und passen perfekt auf die 57mm/2.25 inch Felder meines Schachbretts. Ich bin sehr zufrieden mit Royal Chess Mall, die Lieferung wurde wirklich schnell abgewickelt, wenn man bedenkt, daß es von Amritsar nach Frankreich ein weiter Weg ist. Wenn ich einen Stern abziehe, dann weil ich 1,5 h wegen der unfähigen DHL im Auto verbracht habe.
The decision, which set to buy, wasn't easy. They all look tempting. Finally I decided for this set. It was a very fast shipping from India to Germany. The pieces war packed very carefully. Each piece was wrapped seperately. The pieces are absolutey marvellous. Especially the knights are impressive with their many details. They look prepared for the fight with their open mouths. Great craftsmanship!
Buying them is a must.
I wasn’t familiar with the 1849-1850 Leuchars Cook Staunton with its attractively broad bases, unique sloping knights, and stylish king’s and queen’s crowns until I discovered this reproduction at Royal Chess Mall. This tall crimson and white lacquered beauty is a regal masterpiece.
Perhaps because I own several 1890-1900 Whittington Pattern, peg-in travel sets with natural bone and cochineal red-dyed pieces, I desired a full-sized red and white set. Now I own one and it’s far grander than I anticipated. Quite frankly, my admiration grew and grew for this reproduction with each piece I freed from its protective foam wrap. What superior craftsmanship in the very well turned, perfectly symmetric pieces and pawns and the strikingly carved knights. I couldn’t help but fall in love with it.
Take heed, this is no tournament set for players to treat with careless abandon even under classical time controls. Naturally, that doesn’t describe all tournament players but enough for the owner of this fine set to be wary. In my opinion, this set should be kept at home and cherished by playing through the games of the grandmasters, past and present, or when analyzing your own games. Besides, at 2-inches the King’s base is far too wide for your typical tournament board sporting 2.25-inch squares. Some may concluded from my photos that a 2.375-inch square board is still too small. In that case, opt for a board with 2.5-inch squares (~65 mm).
I feel obligated to mention the single minor defect where the lacquer didn’t take. You have to look very closely to discover a light, 0.25-inch hairline at the base on a single red rook. This in no way detracts from the five star rating I gave this set.
In conclusion, I was so impressed with this reproduction I purchase two others from Royal Chess Mall: the 3.75-inch 1849 Jacques Cook Staunton Collectors Set in stained boxwood and ebony, and the same set in boxwood and blood rosewood. Those will be reviewed separately.
These Chessmen are beautiful, but more importantly based on all the Research I can find are a very accurate replication of the Original pieces from the famous 1933 Botvinnik vs Flohr match.
Especially the knight appears spot on. Good job Royal Chess Mall!
prima volta che acquistavo qui, avevo un po' paura visto l'importo elevato. Pezzi arrivati ben imballati uno ad uno. E' stato stupendo aprirli uno alla volta e scoprire man mano la qualità con cui sono stati fatti. Posso solo che consigliarli. Scacchiera 60x60 cm con caselle da 60x60 mm. Foto fatta con i phone 14 pro max
This set blows me away. The carving and finish are top flight. The braided land on the knights are different and striking. These pieces go great on my ebony 2,5” square board with a gloss finish. My chess friends have complimented extensively on the Columbian design. It makes their regular Staunton sets seem a bit dull’. I’m considering ordering a set in red. If you’re looking for pieces that are Staunton with a twist then look no further. Also this communication and service from Royal Chess Mall is top flight. No worries here. Just order.