TOP Edinburgh chef Tony Singh is giving buyers a virtual tour of his £550,000 luxury city villa using a social networking video tool to sell the property.
Viewers from across the globe are being given the chance to look around the five-bedroom house in Duddingston Park using the Periscope app – a social network which allows users to comment as they look at the screen.
The video is only available until today and the chef is hoping he will gain a lot of interest as this is the first time a house sale has been carried out using the app.
Mr Singh said: “I think the app is a fantastic idea. I like trying different food and different recipes so this caught my imagination.
“Imagine you can’t make an open house as you are away for the weekend or cannot get time off work, but you know the sale will progress to the closing date quickly. You log on and view my house wherever you are.”
Mr Singh filmed the house viewing yesterday and would-be buyers were free to ask him and the estate agents questions as they went on the virtual tour.
“It is very slick and easy to use,” he said.
Mr Singh, the former owner of some of the city’s top eateries in recent years including Oloroso, Tony’s Table and Roti, was forced to pull the plug on the restaurants after financial struggles.
In 2010, he revealed there had been a dramatic slump in business since the start of that year.
Earlier this year, Mr Singh travelled to India with the BBC where he met family members for the first time in a bid to unravel the story of how his family came to live in Scotland.
The Periscope viewing began with Mr Singh and his agent sitting on his red leather sofa in the modern lounge, surrounded by floral black and white wallpaper.
During the viewing around 80 people tuned in to see the opulence of the TV chef’s house.
The chef received questions from people all over the world during the virtual tour.
One viewer asked: “What is your favourite thing about this house?”
Mr Singh replied: “The location.”
The app was launched in March this year. It is owned and operated by Twitter and has a potential reach of millions.
Estate agent McEwan Fraser Legal is trialling the app for home viewings and the celebrity chef, who was voted ITV chef of the year in 2000, was chosen as the perfect famous local face to gain attention for the scheme.
“We picked Tony’s house to stream because it is something that will be of interest in the community of Edinburgh,” Ken McEwan, chief executive of McEwan Fraser Legal, said.
Mr Singh was born and raised in Leith. He first began his foray into cookery via a Youth Training Scheme when he was 16.
“Tony has personality and banter and it gave people the chance to see a 30-minute snapshot of his house,” said Mr McEwan. “We are the first estate agents to lodge this technique in Scotland and it is something we are looking to do more of.”