There’s a novel way to spend a pleasant Saturday afternoon in Adelaide’s west – and it’s thanks to one of the oldest games known to humankind.
The historic Lady Daly Hotel on Port Road in Hindmarsh is where renowned Adelaide chess player, teacher and newspaper columnist Alan Goldsmith – he’s a four-time South Australian state champion and placed fourth in the 1990 Australian Championship – hosts chess classes on the first Saturday of every month from 2.00pm to 4.00pm.
Alan, who moved his first chess piece at the tender age of four and immediately fell for a game he passionately believes is a great way for parents to connect with their children, holds his classes in the fittingly time-honoured front lounge room of the hotel, where log fires, leadlight windows, polished floorboards, panelled ceilings and Victorian décor are a constant reminder of the history of both the game and the hotel.
The communal chess pieces and boards are cleaned and disinfected in line with government and health regulations and Alan starts each lesson by providing a little background to the game. He also shares some of the more popular game styles before people are divided into groups of two and play gets underway. He can then be found, glass of red in hand, moving among the tables, looking in on the games and offering advice and encouragement.
It makes for an altogether relaxed afternoon, with anyone interested free to simply roll up and part with the nominal $10 entry fee – although it’s advisable to make bookings through Alan’s company, Knights & Bytes, given the resurgence chess has experienced as people turned to it to pass the time during Covid-19’s darkest lockdown days.
The hotel itself, established in 1864 and named after the wife of the then Governor of South Australia, Sir Dominick Daly, also offers classic pub meals – including gluten-free and vegetarian/vegan options, while gregarious publican Mandy will happily talk you through and serve the many local craft beers and fine South Australian wines on offer.
It’s your move…
For more information contact:
The Lady Daly Hotel
126 Port Road, Hindmarsh
Hotel Tel: 8340 4600
Mobile: 0401 672 481