Fri, Jan 15, 2010 - Page 2 News List

Tourism Bureau recruits South Korean actress

By Shelley Shan  /  STAFF REPORTER

The Tourism Bureau aims to attract more female tourists from Japan and South Korea this year with a music video featuring boy band Fahrenheit (飛輪海) and South Korean actress Ku Hye-sun.

The popular boy band has been the Tourism Bureau’s representative in Japan and South Korea for the last three years, while Ku, the lead actress in the popular South Korean TV series Boys Over Flowers, was chosen as the bureau’s representative for this year.

Members of Fahrenheit will act as tour guides for Ku as she visits tourist attractions around the nation and tries Taiwanese cuisine. Targeting women aged 35 and below, the music video will be entitled Touch Your Heart, which is also the name of the video’s theme song.

Cheng Yi-ping (鄭憶萍), section chief at the bureau’s international travel division, said that the bureau decided to choose Ku because she was famous.

“Boys Over Flowers has aired in Japan, South Korea and many Southeast Asian nations, so audiences in those countries will be familiar with her,” Cheng said. “She is very cute and has a very good image. When we asked her if she wanted to participate, she immediately said ‘yes.’”

So far Fahrenheit has taught Ku how to make Taiwanese spring rolls and she also learned to sing Taiwanese Opera at the National Center for Traditional Arts in Yilan County.

The crews started shooting the music video yesterday.

“Compared with the ­temperature in South Korea, which is about minus 10°C right now, the weather in Taiwan feels like spring,” Ku said.

The Tourism Bureau is also planning to shoot another music video to attract tourists from Southeast Asia. It will feature pop diva Jolin Tsai (蔡依林) and director Wu Nien-jen (吳念真).

Statistics from the Tourism Bureau showed that about 4.4 million people visited Taiwan last year, registering a 14 percent growth over 2008. About 2.3 million came for tourism, an increase of 29.7 percent over 2008.

The nation’s top four sources of tourists were Japan, China, Hong Kong and Macau.

Tourists from South Korea grew by 32 percent last month, halting a decline of 13 consecutive months.

In related news, the Tourism Bureau will today unveil the designs of the main lantern and the handheld lantern for this year’s Taiwan Lantern Festival, which will be held in Chiayi City at the end of next month.

Both the main lantern and handheld lantern, to be unveiled at the Grand Hotel, will feature a Tiger design for the year of the Tiger in the Chinese Zodiac.

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