Dean Village is fairytale setting for ‘Royal’ advert

The 'Royal' couple make their way through Dean Village. Picture: Saltire News and Sport

The 'Royal' couple make their way through Dean Village. Picture: Saltire News and Sport

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A prince and princess visited one of Edinburgh’s most picturesque settings in a stunning horse-drawn carriage.

The couple’s arrival to the historic Dean Village sounds like something out of a fairytale – but they were in fact actors filming a TV advertising campaign for a Chinese mineral water company.

Shooting gets underway. Picture: Saltire News and Sport

Shooting gets underway. Picture: Saltire News and Sport

The commercial is the latest in a series of ads for Ganten Chinese bottled mineral water, which has got more than one billion viewers enthralled.

It is hoped that the widespread exposure will help boost the tourism and trade links which have already blossomed between Scotland and China.

The storyline for the advertisement has previously shown the princess – played by Scottish-based model Magda Zalejska – meeting her handsome prince over a bottle of Ganten, and marrying him.

In the latest instalment, they have become a family. They revisit the fictitious “Corner Cafe” at the foot of Bells Brae in Dean Village with their little princess, and she has her own encounter with a little boy, again involving a bottle of water.

The couple. Picture: Saltire News and Sport

The couple. Picture: Saltire News and Sport

Edinburgh-based production company Freak Films transformed parts of Dean Village for the romantic commercial, which finished shooting on Saturday evening.

The advert will include scenic shots taken from the air by drone to showcase the stunning surroundings.

Tamsin Andsell, Freak Films’ managing director, said there was “huge potential” for a boost to tourist numbers on the back of the “regal” advert.

She said: “Our Chinese client loves the association with Scotland and its heritage, and this time the focus is on Dean Village.

“The romance which has been born in the previous adverts has turned into a little family, and they return to the spot with their little girl. She makes friends with a little boy who gives her a bottle of the water.

“It’s all very regal-looking, with princes and princesses, and horses and carriages.”

She added: “The previous adverts have been well received in China, winning awards and featuring heavily in the Chinese press.

“There has also been a social media frenzy with people guessing how the story will develop.

“There is huge potential for added tourism for Dean Village, Edinburgh and Scotland.

“It goes out to audiences of tens of millions, and the response has been fantastic because the look is so different to what Chinese audiences usually see in their TV commercials. It’s very exciting. The area footage of Dean Village and the Water of Leith will be beautiful.”

Scotland and China have already forged strong links, notably with the loan of Tian Tian and Yang Guang, the two giant pandas on a ten-year lease to Edinburgh Zoo.

Scottish products such as salmon and whisky are also extremely popular in China, while figures released last year revealed that there were around 23,000 visits by Chinese nationals in 2013 – up from just 5000 in 2010.

And at Edinburgh’s Hogmanay last year, major Chinese broadcaster Central China TV beamed live footage of the world-famous bash for the very first time.