Ancient travelers, whose caravans passed along the Great Silk Route, would have called this scene a mirage. Amid the interminable Kalmyk steppe a city lies with cosy cottages. The most brilliant people from all over the world come together here to compete for the chess crown. A mirage embodied into a real city, the City Chess. The City Chess is located in the suburb of Elista, the capital of the Republic of Kalmykia which lies in the Eastern Coast of the Caspian Sea, in the steppe zone lacking natural resources. The population of the republic is little more than 300 thousand people. See more here and here.