Throughout the region there are numerous health experts, spa gurus, well-being writers and personalities that stand out from the rest. Found in every single corner of Asia, they span the region’s countries and have a circle of expertise that spreads far and wide. Our judges come from more than ten countries, including Hong Kong, China, Singapore, Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, India, Australia and also include some Asia experts living in the UK and US.
We have absolute trust in the expertise of our judges, who are picked for their independent opinions and wide-ranging experience.
Confidentiality is the key in this process, as the awards are a benchmark for the region’s spa industry. From this elite group, in complete confidence, they firstly suggest their nominations for each category and then vote for their single choice.
The voting process is supervised by a law firm in Hong Kong to ensure the authenticity of the votes.
Vivienne Tang, Editor-in-Chief, AsiaSpa
Vivienne Tang is AsiaSpa’s Editor-in-Chief. She has been expressing her passion for wellness and travel over a number of years, having launched her own holistic lifestyle website, The Source Asia, in 2008. She also spent 12 years in fashion and lifestyle publishing. Today, she fuses the two to bring you the best in luxury lifestyle, travel and wellness.
Foong Seong Khong, Managing Director, Blu Inc Media (Asia)
Foong Seong Khong is the Managing Director of Blu Inc Media (Asia), a subsidiary of publicly-listed media group Singapore Press Holdings (SPH), the publisher of leading luxury lifestyle magazines, including AsiaSpa, Asia-Pacific Boating, China Boating, LP- Luxury Properties, JET Asia-Pacific and Action Asia.
Johnny Chang, Founder & CEO, Spa Solutions Training & Management
Founder and CEO of Spa Solutions Shanghai, Johnny Chang has more than 20 years of international hotel spa and spa product branding experience in China. He acts as a bridge between East and West, offering allround spa and product brands development consultation and training services to turn their passion into reality.
Catherine Feliciano-Chon, Founder & Managing Director, CatchOn
Cathy Chon is the Founder & Managing Director of CatchOn, the leading brand and PR consultancy in Asia for wellness and hospitality. CatchOn has conceptualised and launched over 30 spas worldwide and over 50
cosmetic brands, while providing Asian market entry advice to international brands. Chon is a sought-after speaker for her keen insights
on the Asian consumer market and emerging trends. She has spoken at the Global Spa & Wellness Summit and served as a judge for the
World Spa Awards and Spa China Summits.
Caroline Eden, Journalist
Caroline Eden is a travel writer and journalist specialising in Asia. She is a regular contributor to the travel, arts and culture pages of The
Guardian, Financial Times, various Condé Nast titles, Asian Art Newspaper, AsiaSpa and other publications as well as having a weekly
travel page in London’s Metro newspaper
Susie Ellis, President, SpaFinder Wellness
As president of Spafinder Wellness and Director of the company’s annual Spa and Wellness Trends Forecast, Susie Ellis is recognised as a leading authority on spa and wellness and is a prominent writer, speaker and industry analyst. Ellis is also chairman and CEO of the not-for-profit Global Wellness Institute (GWI), a world authority and thinktank
for wellness-related industries. She also guides the annual Global Wellness Summit that takes place in a different country each year. She is the recipient of the International Spa Association’s Visionary Award.
Faridah Ahmad Fadzil, President, Malaysian Association of Wellness and Spa
Faridah Binti Ahmad Fadzil co-founded Tanamera, an award-winning range of natural spa and lifestyle products modelled on Malaysian beauty treatments. An Honour Business Management graduate from Northern
Illinois University, she is a second-generation herbalist specialising in tropical herbs. Fadzil is the Founding President of the Malaysian Association of Wellness and Spa (MAWSPA) and is currently the advisor for the organisation.
Nealy Fischer, Founder, MAYYA Movement
Nealy Fischer is the Founder of MAYYA Movement, a leading health and wellness platform in Asia that creates comprehensive health and wellness solutions for women everywhere. She leads yoga classes, food and yoga workshops, cooking seminars, and luxury retreats across Asia in order to inspire women globally to lead healthy, balanced and fulfilled lives. Fischer regularly travels the globe seeking out the best spas, yoga teachers, fitness methods and health professionals to inform and improve the care she provides to family and clients.
Samantha Foster, President, International Health & Wellness Alliance
A proven manager, trainer, therapist and experienced spa consultant, Samantha Foster has worked with a number of top brands throughout Asia-Pacific over the last 20 years. Her specialty is setting up and managing destination spas and wellness centres. A published author and popular speaker, Foster also runs international courses in spa development and management. Twice awarded for her leadership in the spa industry, she is the founding President of the newly formed International Health & Wellness Alliance (IHWA).
Najwa Green Director, Spa Services & Products International
Canadian-born Najwa Green is a renowned global hospitality consultant who has worked in the luxury hotel and spa sectors for over 30 years. Combining service experience gleaned from banking and airlines as well as hospitality, she has worked with brands such as The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, InterContinental Hotels, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts
and numerous boutique properties. She is passionate about developing the spa industry by creating spa menus and innovative treatments, as well as training and developing therapists’ skills.
Maggie Gunning, Spa Consultant
Maggie Gunning has gained much of her spa experience in Asia and Europe with international hotel brands, honing her skills in all aspects of spa health and consultancy from concept design to spa set-up, operations
and training. Former Founder and Managing Director of spa consulting firm Spa Synergy, Gunning is a fully qualified aesthetician in face
and body treatments. She has also coached both the practical and theoretical sides of sparelated treatments and acted as international
examiner for the Confederation of International Beauty Therapy & Cosmetology, UK.
Andrew Jacka, Director, Spa Origins
Andrew Jacka has worked in hospitality since 1977, initially as a chef, but later focusing on the spa sector. In 2002 he joined his former MD in a spa consultancy firm. Passionate about the spa and wellness industry, he was
previously the President of the Thai Spa Association and Chairman of the Asia Pacific Spa & Wellness Coalition. Today, Jacka is Chairman of the World Spa & Well-being Convention. His Bangkok-based company, Spa Origins, specialises in the provision of spa consultancy services working from concept to operational opening.
Chami Jotisalikorn, Author, Journalist and Communications Consultant
Chami Jotisalikorn is an internationally known journalist and author of over ten coffee table books on Asian spas, interior design and luxury travel, including the bestselling titles Thai Spa Book and Thailand’s Luxury Spas, sold worldwide in six languages. Jotisalikorn contributes to AsiaSpa, CNN Travel, Condé Nast Traveller and many more newspapers,
inflight magazines, travel and spa guides. She is a Wellness Travel Expert for Spafinder, and works as a marketing communications consultant for niche lifestyle clients such as boutique hotels, spas and design firms.
Catharine Nicol, Journalist
Following four years as Editor-in-Chief and another four as Editor-at-Large at AsiaSpa, Catharine Nicol is now a freelancer, but still passionate about Asia’s incredible wellness industry. With over a decade of years researching renowned destinations, within Asia but also worldwide, her love of the industry, its growth and what it is achieving keeps her motivated to keep discovering innovative treatments and skincare products, mind-body and spiritual philosophies and the incredible people and talent that lie behind them.
Rachael Oakes-Ash, Journalist
Rachael Oakes-Ash has always had a strong passion for wellness. As a published author, full-time travel journalist and keynote speaker, Oakes-Ash has been a judge on the AsiaSpa Awards since 2006. Her expert opinion is also often sought by the Australian Gourmet Traveller Awards and the annual HM Awards. Her work appears in Luxe City Guides, DestinAsian, Emirates’ Open Skies, TIME, Sun Herald, Sydney Morning Herald and more.
Parineeta Sethi, Chief Editor & Publisher, AsiaSpa India
Through India’s most respected wellness and spa lifestyle magazine, Parineeta Sethi has observed the evolution of the Indian wellness industry from close range and has actively contributed to its growth by providing a platform for spas, Indian spa-goers and global travelers to interact. She is on the advisory panel of the Ministry of Tourism and has been working closely with the ministry to position India as a wellness tourist destination.
Chantel Shafie, Founding Editor, Beauty Buzz HK
As Founding Editor of www.beautybuzzhk.com – ‘Hong Kong’s Beauty Bible’, a successful online magazine dedicated to beauty, spas and wellness in Hong Kong, and as a travel TV and RTHK radio presenter, Chantel Shafie has sampled and enjoyed many of the best spas and treatments around the world, culminating in an in-depth knowledge of the industry in
Mark Smith, Editor, The Spa Man and Contributing Editor, European Spa
Mark Smith is a spa and grooming writer based in London. Originally from Tasmania, Australia he moved to the UK almost 20 years ago and spends his time consulting for brands and writing about the spa industry. As Contributing Editor for European Spa Magazine, he travels widely across Europe and has also written or Men’s Fitness, Sleeper, Spa Secrets, Highlife, Spa Traveller, Professional Spa and Spa Ireland. One of a handful of male spa writers, Smith has The Spa Man blog, where he offers his unique perspective on spa.
Lisa Starr, Spa and Salon Consultant, Wynne Business
Spa and salon business consultant for Wynne Business, spa management trainer and educator on five continents, highly rated speaker at industry events, and regular contributor to global spa trade publications, Starr has been helping companies maximise spa operations performance in both front and back of house for 30 years. Her knowledge and experience provide turnkey solutions in areas like spa business operations, finances and compensation, marketing, inventory
management, human resource development and business process improvement.
Rebecca Walker, Founder, The Wellness Nomad
Born in Australia and based in Asia for nearly a decade, Rebecca Walker is an avid writer, traveller and certified yoga teacher whose passion for wellness has led her to some of the world’s best resorts and healing sanctuaries. Former Editor-in-Chief of AsiaSpa, Walker founded the wellness retreat consultancy The Wellness Nomad in 2012.
Pete Wong, Photojournalist and PR & Media Consultant, Awarna Media
Founder of media agency, Awarna Media, Pete Wong counts travel, writing and photography as his life passions. When he has time off from the office, he travels to remote destinations
in Asia, at times visiting resorts and spas. His work is regularly featured in publications around the region, including Shanghai Daily, ParGolf and Building & Investment, among others. Wong has been contributing to AsiaSpa since 2005 and calls Kuala Lumpur home.
Melinda Yon, Senior Academic Staff, Republic Polytechnic in Singapore
Melinda Yon has been a spa consultant, spa director, spa business owner, spa educator and spa writer (including several editions as Editor of AsiaSpa Men). Currently, she is training her spa, service and hospitality skills at Republic Polytechnic’s School of Hospitality in Singapore to develop the next generationof spa managers. Previously the Managing Director of Asian-based boutique consulting firm, 360 Spa Solutions, she is a frequent MC and guest speaker at wellness conferences, and she has served on the board of several spa associations.