Spafinder Wellness announces 2015 World Travel Awards judging panel

Above: Clinique La Prairie, one of last year's winners 

Spafinder Wellness has announced the judging panel for the 2015 Wellness Travel Awards. The panel consists of 33 spa and wellness editors and other industry professionals from around the world

The awards, now in their second year, recognise international spas, hotel, resorts and retreats that excel in offering wellness experiences. 

Awards are given to the top wellness travel properties on six continents, with country awards also presented to the best spas, hotels, resorts and retreats in more than 40 nations. 

The first round of judging, which opens at the beginning of May, will see the panel make their nominations across 20 different categories, including Best New Spa & Wellness Travel Property, Best for Outdoor Adventures & Activities and Best for Families. 

Voting will then open up to consumers around the world, in July. The winners of the 2015 awards will be announced at the World Travel Market, held in London November 2-5. 

Winners of the 2014 awards incloude Canyon Ranch, which won the regional Crystal award for North America, Blue Lagoon in Iceland, which won Best for Mineral Hot Springs, Switzerland's Clinique La Prairie, crowned Best for Medical Services, and Cal-a-Vie Health Spa in California, named Best for Beautifying. 

The judges for the 2015 Wellness Travel Awards are

Kris Abbey, publishing editor, Spa Life Magazine (Australia)
 
Gustavo Albanesi, president, Brazilian Spa and Clinics Association (South America)
 
Katie Barnes, managing editor, Spa Business magazine (Europe)
 
Mary Bemis, founder and editorial director, Insider's Guide to Spas (North America)
 
Elena Bogacheva, president and founder, Spa & Wellness International Council; CEO, Spa Priori (Europe)
 
Anitra Brown, spa expert, About.com (North America)
 
Julie Keller Callaghan, editor-in-chief and publisher, American Spa magazine (North America)
 
Sarah Camilleri, founding editor and publisher, European Spa magazine (Europe)
 
Isabelle Charrier, founder and managing editor, Emotion Spa magazine (Europe)
 
Sandhya Chipalkatti, editor and publisher, Spa Mantra magazine (Asia)
 
Anne-Marie Cook, magazine writer and editor (Australia)
 
Susan d'Arcy, luxury travel and spa editor, London Sunday Times (Europe)
 
Anne Dimon, founder and CEO, Travel to Wellness (North America) 
 
Suzanne Duckett, associate editor, Tatler Spa Guide; founder, The Antidote (Europe)
 
Nora Elias, editor, Professional Spa & Wellness magazine (Europe)
 
Catherine Feliciano-Chon, founder and managing director, Catch On (Asia)
 
Jo Foley, editor, writer, author, Vanity Fair, Harper’s Bazaar, Spears Wealth (Europe)
 
Gustavo F Gaffrey, founder and CEO, Spas of Argentina; former president, Argentina Spa Association (South America)
 
Franka Hänig, editor-in-chief, Spa inside (Europe)
 
Sara Jones, managing director and editor, Spa Professional México (South America)
 
Fifi Kao, editor-in-chief, Spa China magazine (Asia)
 
Dr. Franz Linser, CEO, Linser Hospitality (Europe)
 
Maia Medonca, editor-in-chief, Lindenberg, Bazaar Bride, Bem Mais magazines (South America)
 
Kate Phillips Melaragno, travel editor, Spafinder Wellness 365 (North America)
 
Catharine Nicol, freelance writer, editor, photographer, blogger, www.spasandbeyond-blog.com, South China Morning Post, AsiaSpa (Asia)
 
Elaine Okeke-Martin, founder and editor, Spa and Wellness Africa magazine; founder and president, Wellness Association of Africa (Africa)
 
Si Si Penaloza, luxury content manager, Jetset magazine (North America)
 
Sheetal Rastogi, editorial director, World Travel magazine (Asia)
 
Sarah Joan Ross, editor, Modern Spa Magazine (Europe) 
 
Chris Ryall, freelance writer and columnist (North America)
 
Gaurav Sinha, founder and CEO, Insignia Worldwide (Middle East)
 
Vivienne Tang, editor-in-chief, AsiaSpa magazine (Asia)
 
Fiona Vlemmiks, editor, Professional Beauty GCC (Middle East)