Floors blooming in latest VisitScotland campaign

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A VisitScotland television advert featuring Floors Castle on the Roxburghe Estate has been launched at Edinburgh Castle and will be broadcast for the first time tonight.

VisitScotland’s new Surprise Yourself television advert marks the start of the Year of Creative Scotland 2012 and was unveiled by Fiona Hyslop MSP, Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs. The advert, that will run until the middle of March, will support the year-long celebration and promotion of Scotland’s cultural and creative strengths on a world stage.

Directed by renowned Glasgow-born photographer David Eustace and voiced by popular television historian, Neil Oliver, the advert also features scenes from the Edinburgh International Festival, a performance of Macbeth at Glamis Castle, the Pittenweem Arts Festival in Fife and Robert Burns storytelling in Ayrshire.

The advert is part of a campaign costing £4million, including additional funding by the Scottish Government. It is part of VisitScotland’s highly successful Surprise Yourself campaign which last year generated additional tourism income of £90million for the Scottish economy. Full-year figures for all region-specific marketing activity supported by the Scottish Borders Council will be published in the coming months.

This year’s Surprise Yourself campaign will continue to focus on the regions’ surprising twists on familiar backdrops while also showcasing its well-known culture and creativity.

The Culture Secretary said: “Scotland is a creative nation and our culture is one of our greatest strengths.

“Our wealth of world-class events, festivals, cultural collections and organisations are already a major draw for visitors. The Year of Creative Scotland 2012 offers the opportunity to highlight new ways to see and experience this in every corner of Scotland.

“VisitScotland’s spectacular new advert is a fantastic way to promote this year-long celebration of our culture and creativity that is taking place in communities right across the country.”

VisitScotland regional director, Paula McDonald, said: “We are entering a tremendously exciting time for tourism in the Scottish Borders. The Year of Creative Scotland heralds the start of the Winning Years – a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity featuring eight major events and milestones, including the release this summer of Disney-Pixar’s Brave and the Olympic Games in London.

“By highlighting some of the highly dynamic and contemporary things Scotland has to offer, our stunning new television advert will capture the imagination of millions of potential visitors and help ensure that the Winning Years get off to a winning start.”

The Year of Creative Scotland 2012 is a Scottish Government initiative in partnership with EventScotland, VisitScotland, Creative Scotland and VOCAL.

A year-long programme celebrating the country’s world-class events, festivals, culture and heritage, it puts Scotland in the international spotlight with a focus on cultural tourism and the events industry and creative sector.

The national campaign includes direct mail to nearly 500,000 people, promotions with media partners and well-known brands, radio activity featuring Neil Oliver and online activity encouraging people to go to visitscotland.com/surprise and take advantage of over 300 offers from tourism businesses across Scotland.