Fit for a King
...or a Queen! Let's explore Kesaro's luxurious palace!
Chahkgri Palace is a place to get lost in. Even before stepping inside the shadows of the imposing palace walls, a visitor could easily get sidetracked for hours within the luxurious, intricately arranged gardens. There’s even a giant hedge maze!
Enter the palace, and you’ll discover a warren of stairwells, hallways and rooms great and small. And pillars. More pillars than you could hope to count. Seriously, don’t try and count the pillars. We haven’t got all day, and we have an entire palace to explore!
Watch the video above for a grand tour of the palace! JUST DON’T TOUCH ANYTHING.
The mastermind behind this Palace of Sands is Kesaro, a 22-year-old animation student in Belfast who discovered Minecraft in 2009, when he had plans of becoming an architect.
“I've always been fascinated by Middle-Eastern culture,” Kesaro tells me. “The architecture of its classical eras, the jarring contrast between an often harsh and unforgiving environment and the staggering beauty.”
“Growing up in a fairly rural part of Northern Ireland meant that the rest of the world always held a mysterious allure and I did everything in my power to feed that desire,” he explains.
“With Chahkgri Palace I wanted to look back, and construct my own personal homage to not only Arabian architecture, but to the Babylonian, Persian and Grecian styles that have had such an influence on my career as an artist and my creative pursuits in Minecraft.”
Even though the palace’s various parts fit well together, their respective styles are distinct. This was intentional from the beginning.
“Honestly, the planning of the Palace was something that evolved naturally, and this was somewhat intended,” explains Kesaro. “Many prominent castles or palaces had many architects, often due to how long they took to build in reality.
“So when we started building, I wanted each section to give off the sense of having its own architect behind it. Despite this natural evolution, I knew fairly certainly the kind of palace I wanted to create, I wanted it to be opulent and complex, with a myriad of different functions that formed a lived-in environment.”
Inside the palace you’ll find wine cellars, private chambers, kitchens, stables, banquet halls, a throne room, ball room and more! It’s easy to picture these spaces bustling with servants waiting on the palace’s masters and their high-born guests.
“I enjoyed planning each room I wanted to include and then arranging them like a puzzle to get the eventual layout,” says Kesaro. “This relaxed approach, understanding what you want the substance of the build to be and then deciding where to put things from there, makes the actual journey of building just as compelling as the finished piece.”
That finished piece consists of exactly 4,295,374 blocks. Whoa!
“The size, in retrospect, proved a challenge,” admits Kesaro. “When taking on a task like this, it's easy to get lost or abandon it. I was fortunate enough to have a very good friend helping me, and giving me support in its construction.”
"I wanted each section to give off the sense of having its own architect behind it "
That friend was crucial to the success of Chakgri palace. Because as much as Kesaro enjoys losing himself in the building process, it’s finding himself in the presence of other inspired builders that motivates him to build in the first place.
“I've had the pleasure of meeting some amazing people through this game, many of whom I'm still close to,” Kesaro tells me.
“In the end, the most important piece of inspiration for me has always been the community that I found within Minecraft, and the support of people who share many of my same passions and are always forthcoming with great ideas and feedback that have helped shape everything I build.”
So there you have it - a great builder, not just inspired by Middle Eastern architecture, but the amazing people he’s met through Minecraft!
Sadly, the only person I’ve met through Minecraft is the editor of this website, and he’s a total jerk. No offence, Tom! Please don't stop giving me work.