Bespoke games maker Alexandra Llewellyn was first struck by the “language of games” many years ago in Egypt, playing backgammon with a nonagenarian local under the shade of a palm tree. He couldn’t speak English, so they used the theater of play to communicate with one another—the one thing that bound them was the knowledge of this centuries-old game. She now crafts exquisite board games, art-worthy pieces that are passed on through generations—such as a recent commission for woman who wanted a custom backgammon game for her partner, hidden with secret allusions to their relationship. “Playing games is like football; it brings people together,” Llewellyn says. While lockdown means that chess and backgammon parks across the world are closed, we can still play with family, and why not do it in style? From a bespoke monopoly board to a shagreen Mahjong game and a Baccarat domino set crafted in crystal, we bring you seven alluring games to pass the time during lockdown—and beyond.
By Jemima Sissons
Courtesy of Geoffrey Parker