Merry Christmas & Happy Holidays!

Comments: 14

First, let me remind you about the Christmas special offer we’re providing you with: get a massive 30% discount on all RCA courses. Use coupon “holidays30” when making your purchase. It will be valid only till Saturday, 31 December. You can find more information about this offer here.

designIn this article I’d like to share my Holiday spirits with you. Have fun! 🙂 In this Christmas season, I’ve visited the country that originated the tradition of Christmas trees – Germany.


The custom was brought to North America by German-speaking immigrants to Pennsylvania and Ohio in the 18th century.

GM Igor Smirnov celebrates ChristmasChristmas market in Munich, Germany


Germans are also the ones who established a tradition to illuminate streets during the Christmas time.



It’s great to see the rise of interest in chess in Germany lately. In 2016, Germans were the second largest group (after US) of those who studied RCA courses.
 alt=Albrecht (on the right) is an amateur chess player and a great guy! Here, I’d like to thank Albrecht and all the German students who invited me. Sadly, I could not visit many cities and had to miss some of the invitations. Thanks a lot for your hospitality! 🙂


In the residence of Bavarian kings (who ruled this German region in 1508-1918), I’ve found marvelous chess board.
 alt=It’s made of gold and precious stones, and should be worth a whole lot of money.


In ‘Deutsches museum’ there was one of the old models of electronic chess boards.
 alt=You can play your move on the board, while the computer shows you its reply on the screen. Large machinery was required to make this computer work.
 alt=Ok, here I’m kidding. 🙂 It’s irrelevant to the chess comp from the previous photo.


Nevertheless, in this photo, my wife stands near to the old version of the computer (back in those days where a comp could hardly fit into your pocket!).


<<To be continued>>


P.S. What do you like about Christmas? How do you usually spend the Holidays? 🙂 Feel free to share your Christmas Vibes with us in the comments below.
Comments: 14

Comments 14

  1. Thank you for sending me such a beautiful greetings card which covers the best wishes for both chess and life.
    I wish you also a more happy and prosperous 2014 than any of your previous years.

  2. Dear igor,
    can you make, a 3hr/day and 5hr/weekend schedule based on your courses(including free lessons),for us?i think this will be a huge bonus and boost for every one of us..
    I wish you a happy and prosperous 2014 !!

    1. You always do a great job, Mikel! Thanks for sharing my greeting card on your Facebook page. It’ll help more people to see a profound meaning of chess.

      Note: Mikel is a great person who took the initiative to organize a chess club in Albania. They started from scratch and now it’s an active organization that teaches chess to Albanian children, makes tournaments etc.

  3. Esteemed Igor:
    I thank you very much for your beautiful Seasons greetings card. This shows something that is very evident in your instruction: you do care and you take much pride in caring for your followers. I am committing to your courses for this New year 2014. I have been studying your free lessons and reading your follow up messages which demonstrate how much effort you put into promoting good and sound instruction of the amazing science that is Chess! My best wishes to you and may you create much more comrades in chess for 2014, kind regards, JR. Clemente

  4. I got “the grandmaster’s positional understanding” and “GM’s Secrets” for christmas, and i’ve studied the material as much as i could, and i must say, it’s absolutely fantastic. I don’t say this often to people, but Igor, I love you man! I’ve only played chess since about 2 and a half month back, and i’ve during this period also joined a chess club and been in a few blitz tournaments. When the holiday is over and the chess club will start again, they will be very surprised how good i’ve become! Haha 😀 I wish you a very merry christmas, even though it’s over, and a happy new year! Btw, i’ve also noticed that it doesn’t seem to be any swedish translation for your courses, and i am a eager volunteer if you need one.

  5. Thanks, GM Igor for always keeping in touch with chess fans. All the best for you and your team for the holidays and wish you more raving fans for 2014!
    – Day_Dreamer

  6. happy new year dear igor sir and merry christmas god bless you you are doing great job sir.dear sir what do you think about im john bartholomew and shogi legend who plays two games against kasparov and gives him a tough fight??

    1. Thanks for your season greetings! I hope you’ll have nice New Year celebration and wonderful 2017, achieving more of your chess goals!

      Frankly, I know nothing about shogi game, and know little about that much between Kasparov and shogi player. I think it was kind of an event for promotion and popularization purpose rather than serious chess match.

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