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Scotland’s Best Attraction 10 years’ running

Press Release   •   Jan 12, 2016 11:39 GMT

The Royal Yacht Britannia has officially been Scotland’s Best Visitor Attraction for each of the last 10 years, as rated by national tourism organisation VisitScotland.

Having just received their results for 2015, staff at the iconic five star attraction, are delighted to have achieved a record score of 96%, the highest mark ever awarded to a visitor attraction in Scotland, beating their own record, set in 2014.

VisitScotland’s Quality Assurance Scheme, is the official measure of quality for tourism businesses, benchmarking visitor attractions, accommodation providers, and catering establishments across Scotland. Tourism businesses are assessed, according to a set of quality criteria, based on the welcome, attitude, knowledge and efficiency of staff, as well as audience level, interpretation, maintenance and cleanliness.

With 308,906 visitors in 2015, The Royal Yacht last week announced 2015 as its best, since its opening year in 1999. A total of almost 5 million people from around the world have visited The Queen’s former floating palace since it opened in Edinburgh in 1998.

Commenting on this outstanding success, Britannia’s Chief Executive, Bob Downie said:

“To be the best in Scotland once is a fantastic achievement, but to do this for ten consecutive years is a phenomenal tribute to our staff who go the extra mile to ensure that all our visitors have a great experience when they visit Britannia. The true test of any great organisation is consistency of performance, delivering great value for time and money, year in year out, and there is no doubt that our pioneering approach to providing great customer experiences has underpinned our success.”

Malcolm Roughead, VisitScotland’s Chief Executive, said:

“I’d like to congratulate Britannia on this fantastic achievement, which demonstrates an outstanding commitment to quality and excellence in every aspect of the business. Retaining the accolade of Scotland’s best attraction for 10 years’ running, Britannia is setting the standards for tourism in Scotland, and it is a real testament to the total commitment shown by their staff to consistently deliver a world leading customer experience.”

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For further information please contact Lynda Dalgleish, Head of Marketing at on 0131 555 8800 or 07747 477218.

See link to Britannia’s Year in Pictures 2015.

Follow us on Facebook: The Royal Yacht BRITANNIA or Twitter: @Britanniayacht

Notes for Editors:

1.With 9,500 customer reviews, The Royal Yacht has held its position among TripAdvisor’s top 3 UK landmark attractions for two years’ running, actually taking the No.1 spot in 2014. The award-winning attraction has also received TripAdvisor’s Award for Excellence for 4 years in a row.
2. An unforgettable attraction for visitors, as well as a prestigious evening events venue, Britannia is regarded as one of Edinburgh’s ‘must-see’ destinations. Britannia was home to Her Majesty The Queen and the Royal Family for over 40 years, sailing over one million miles around the world. Following The Yacht’s decommissioning in 1997, Britannia is now berthed in Edinburgh, where visitors can follow in the footsteps of Royalty to discover the heart and soul of this most special of Royal residences. Celebrations will be taking place in 2016 to mark Her Majesty the Queen’s 90th birthday.

3. Providing the highest standards of customer experience to every visitor, regardless of age or ability, is at the heart of Britannia’s success, and recent developments have included the audio guide being available in British Sign Language, Braille and 27 languages, making it the most translated tour in the world.

4. Britannia is owned by The Royal Yacht Britannia Trust (Registered Charity No. SC028070). The Trust’s responsibility is to maintain and preserve Britannia in keeping with her former role and to display her to the public as a key part of British maritime history. The Trust is a wholly self-funding, not-for-profit, charitable organisation. Income generated from running the Royal Yachtas a visitor attraction and events venue goes towards preserving the yacht for future generations. Britannia is the official headquarters of the Association of Royal Yachtsmen.

Developed and continually improved over the past 25 years, VisitScotland's Quality Assurance schemes are recognised throughout the world and provide a trusted, independent and impartial source of information for visitors. For more information about the VisitScotland Quality Assurance scheme, see:

Notes to Editors

  • Follow us on twitter: @visitscotnews
  • VisitScotland is Scotland’s national tourism organisation. Its core purpose is to maximise the economic benefit of tourism to Scotland.
  • The organisation’s core objective is to contribute to the Tourism 2020 Strategy ambition of growing tourism revenues by £1 billion by 2020.
  • This will be supported by seven overarching strategies:
    1. Marketing: we will market Scotland and its outstanding assets to visitors from all parts of the world, including the promotion of Scotland to people living in Scotland       to visit different parts of the country
    2. Events: we will support the national events strategy and its delivery, and sustain, develop and promote Scotland’s international profile as one of the world’s foremost events destinations
    3. Internationalisation and International Engagement: we will utilise all our platforms to enable Scottish-based tourism businesses to better understand international       opportunities and market to a global audience and we will work within One       Scotland Partnerships to optimise the potential of Scotland’s Diaspora and our strategic partners at regional, European and global levels
    4. Customer Experience: we will provide information and inspiration to visitors both locally and globally via their preferred medium of choice
    5. Quality and Sustainability: we will provide support and advice to businesses, with the goal of improving the quality and sustainability of the tourism sector in Scotland. We will provide quality assurance to visitors through our Quality Schemes
    6. Inclusive Tourism: we will strive to make tourism in Scotland inclusive and available to all
    7. Working in Partnership: we will listen to and work with the industry, partners and communities to shape our offering and support
  • VisitScotland works together with tourism businesses to make tourism a success for everyone and ensure the industry continues to grow.
  • The organisation employs 700 people and has offices and VisitScotland Information Centres across Scotland.
  • According to a recent Deloitte study, the tourism economy supports 270,000 jobs in Scotland in 20,000 diverse businesses. The same study calculates that the tourism      economy contributes £11 billion annually (direct and indirect impact, including day visits) and supports around 10 per cent of employment in Scotland. Almost 16 million tourists take overnight trips to Scotland.
  • For VisitScotland’s press releases go to, tourism statistics and frequently asked questions go to
  • Where possible, a Gaelic speaker will be made available for broadcast interviews on request (Far an tèid iarraidh, agus far am bheil sin nar comas, bruidhinnidh neach le Gàidhlig aig agallamh)
  • For holiday information on Scotland go to
  • For information about business events in Scotland go to

    Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design 2016

  • 2016 will shine a spotlight on Scotland’s achievements in innovation, architecture and design through a wide-ranging, variety of new and existing activity.
  • The Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design begins on 1 January 2016 and ends on 31 December 2016 and will build on the momentum generated by the current 2015 Year of Food and Drink as well as previous years including Homecoming Scotland 2014, the Year of Creative and the Year of Natural.
  • Through a series of exciting events and activity, the year will showcase Scotland’s position as an “innovation nation”, its outstanding built heritage, and its thriving, internationally acclaimed creative industries sector.
  • The Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design is a Scottish Government initiative being led by VisitScotland, and supported by a variety of partners including Scottish Government, Creative Scotland, Architecture + Design Scotland, Scottish Tourism Alliance, Scottish Enterprise, The National Trust for Scotland, Historic Environment Scotland, Highlands and Islands Enterprise and The Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland (RIAS).
  • The Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design events fund is managed by EventScotland, part of VisitScotland’s Events Directorate.
  • Join the conversation at #IAD2016
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