2016 Magellan Awards


October 31, 2016

Travel Weekly's Magellan Awards represent the best of the industry in multiple dimensions. Perhaps it shouldn't be surprising that the same companies and destinations that have shown creativity in bringing richer travel experiences to consumers are also the ones who design, promote and showcase them in the most innovative fashion.

Travel's yin yang is about pushing both interior and exterior boundaries. Travel involves moving physically around the world from pole to pole, across seas and continents, exploring depths and scaling heights. But it also reshapes a traveler's interior landscape, shifting emotional, spiritual and intellectual boundaries, going deep and reaching high.

It is this mix of the actual and abstract, the physical and ethereal, that must be captured in a product design or messaging. And the creativity that's brought to the task can take shape in a near-infinite number of ways.

That a traveler's needs go beyond simple comfort finds expression in fresh approaches to design of hotel rooms, cabins on a ship or airline seats.

That even an ancient destination is also home to a living, ever-evolving culture is captured in itineraries that immerse visitors in unexpected ways.

That a journey can change a traveler's life is, amazingly, conveyed in words and images that may last only 30 seconds.

It's that ability to create the exact right words and images, or if the entry is a physical environment, the juxtaposition of the exact right materials, shapes, colors and technology, that earns a Magellan Award.

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List of winners

View the 2016 Magellan Award winners.

Magellan winners are those marketers and designers whose exploration of travel's yin yang taps the heart and soul of travel. They have ventured beyond the borders others have, perhaps unconsciously, set for themselves.

The carefully crafted messages, whether spoken, printed, posted, broadcast, streamed or tweeted, spark travelers' imaginations and spur them to venture into the world.

And once those travelers have embarked, they encounter design elements of unusual beauty and dimension that elevate and excite their senses.

The art of conceiving, composing and distributing inspiration on the sales and marketing side, and the alchemical process that transforms abstract creative thought into physical beauty on the design side, is what Travel Weekly's Magellan Awards recognize.  

This year's Magellan winners are the industry's marketers, designers, copywriters, videographers, architects, graphic artists, creative directors, photographers and travel consultants who not only spark the impulse to escape the ordinary and travel to new worlds, but to assure that promises and delivery are aligned.

Magellan judges aren't remunerated, but are moved to volunteer in the spirit of recognizing and rewarding exceptional efforts. It is the judges' profound understanding of both consumers and the underlying benefits of travel that make the Magellans meaningful. I want to again publicly share my deepest appreciation to them for putting in the time and effort required to collectively view and score thousands of entries.

(Note: While we're confident these judges could be objective and unbiased no matter whose work they were reviewing, we have taken steps to ensure that there isn't even the appearance of conflicts of interest. None were given entries to critique in categories in which they directly work or have worked.)

The awards are as much for the benefit of Travel Weekly's readers as for those who entered the competition. As you review the Magellan Awards winners, we hope that you, too, find inspiration to rise to new heights.

-- Arnie Weissmann

Magellan Awards Judges

Richard Bangs
Richard Bangs

Richard Bangs

Bangs is the executive producer and host of the PBS program "Richard Bangs' Quests."

He served as executive producer and host of the Emmy-winning PBS series "Richard Bangs' Adventures With Purpose," and his companion book, "Adventures With Purpose," was named best book by the North American Travel Journalists Association in 2007. He was part of the executive team of Expedia.com and served as its editor at large.

Jean-Claude Baumgarten
Jean-Claude Baumgarten

Jean-Claude Baumgarten

Baumgarten is the past president and CEO of the World Travel & Tourism Council, an international organization of travel industry executives that promotes tourism worldwide. Prior to that, he held various executive positions at Air France during a nearly 30-year career, including executive vice president of corporate, international and industry affairs.

Today he is chairman and CEO of Crewe Associates, a management consultancy.

Bruce Beckham
Bruce Beckham

Bruce Beckham

Beckham is a consultant specializing in travel industry marketing, tour operations, travel industry philanthropy and corporate social responsibility. He is a founder of and the executive director emeritus of Tourism Cares, a nonprofit, philanthropic organization.

He is the former owner of a family-operated travel agency and tour company, a past president of the National Tour Association and a past chairman of the National Tourism Foundation.

Randy Garfield
Randy Garfield

Randy Garfield

A travel industry veteran whose career spans four decades, Garfield served as president of the Walt Disney Travel Co. and executive vice president of worldwide sales and travel operations for Disney Destinations until his retirement in April 2014. During his tenure, he oversaw the opening of five theme parks and 27 resort hotels as well as the launches of Disney Cruise Line and Adventures by Disney.

Before joining Disney, Garfield served as chief marketing officer for Universal Studios Florida.

Peter Greenberg
Peter Greenberg

Peter Greenberg

Greenberg is travel editor for CBS News and host of the nationally syndicated "Peter Greenberg Worldwide Radio" show, broadcast each week from a different remote location around the world.

He is co-author of Michelin's "Like a Local" guides and also serves as editor at large of Global Business Travel magazine.

Greenberg produces and co-hosts PBS' "The Royal Tour," which features one-on-one journeys through various countries with their heads of state.

Johnny Jet
Johnny Jet

Johnny Jet

John E. DiScala, aka Johnny Jet, travels more than 150,000 miles and visits 20 countries each year. He and his website JohnnyJet.com have frequently been featured on major network TV and in national publications. He appears every Saturday on Leo Laporte's syndicated radio show, "The Tech Guy," talking about travel and technology.

Budget Travel magazine named JohnnyJet.com one of the top money-saving websites for travel.

Colleen Kelly
Colleen Kelly

Colleen Kelly

Colleen Kelly is the host, co-creator and co-executive producer of the series "Family Travel With Colleen Kelly" airing on PBS stations. Kelly has been a featured speaker at travel industry events such as the Travel and Adventure Show and has appeared in numerous radio and TV broadcasts presenting travel tips, products and hotel/vacation deals for travelers of all types.

Robert Kwortnik
Robert Kwortnik

Robert Kwortnik

Kwortnik is an associate professor of services marketing at Cornell University's School of Hotel Administration. His research focuses on consumer behavior in service contexts, with special attention to service experience management.

His work has been published in the Journal of Marketing Research, Journal of Service Research and the International Journal of Research in Marketing.

John Lampl
John Lampl

John Lampl

Lampl, a consultant and freelance travel writer, spent four decades with British Airways, serving as vice president of corporate communications for the Americas before retiring in 2011.

During his tenure he managed the carrier's launch of services from numerous U.S. cities, including Philadelphia, Washington, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Las Vegas.

Marc Mancini
Marc Mancini

Marc Mancini

Mancini is a travel industry speaker, educator and consultant who has authored or produced 12 books, 32 videos, 27 online courses and over 300 articles.

His firm helped design programs such as Marriott's Hotel Excellence, Holland America Line's HAL Academy and Norwegian Cruise Line's NCL University. While with CLIA, he was the creative force behind nearly 100 seminars, videos and online courses.

Rudy Maxa
Rudy Maxa

Rudy Maxa

Maxa is host of "Rudy Maxa's World," a nationally syndicated travel/talk radio show. He also hosts a series of "Rudy Maxa's World" TV programs that are broadcast on PBS stations throughout North America.

The former Washington Post investigative reporter began covering the travel industry in 1990 as a contributor to the public radio business program "Marketplace."

Kathy Misunas
Kathy Misunas

Kathy Misunas

A 40-year industry veteran, Misunas is a principal of Essential Ideas, a consultancy specializing in travel and tourism, technology and consumer e-retailing.

Previously she was president and CEO of the Sabre Group and senior vice president/chief information officer of AMR Corp., formerly the parent company of American Airlines.

Patricia Schultz
Patricia Schultz

Patricia Schultz

Schultz, a Travel Weekly Masters Series contributing editor, is the author of the No. 1 New York Times best-seller "1,000 Places to See Before You Die." She also served as executive producer of the Travel Channel's TV show based on the book.

Ned Walker
Ned Walker

Ned Walker
Aviation consultant John E. "Ned" Walker served as senior vice president and chief communications officer of Delta Air Lines from October 2008 until his retirement in June 2014.

Walker joined Delta from Continental Airlines, where he was senior vice president of worldwide corporate communications.

Prior to joining the airline industry, Walker was a broadcast journalist in Colorado.

Methodology

The Magellan Awards honor the best in travel and salute the outstanding travel professionals behind it all, from design to marketing to services.

The awards recognize a broad range of industry segments: Airlines and Airports, Cruise Lines, Destinations, Ground Transportation, Hospitality, Online Travel Services, Tour Operators and Travel Agents and Agencies.

Entrants submitted various multimedia elements, such as photos and videos; print materials; and websites, and a panel of 14 travel industry heavyweights judged the entries (none judged categories in which they work or have worked).

Entries do not compete with one another but are instead judged against a standard of excellence based on the long experience of Travel Weekly and considering the category entered.

Judges were asked, for example, to consider how relevant the elements of an entry were to its sector of the travel industry, how well designed the supporting elements were and whether they found the entry "appealing or intriguing."

Those entries scoring between 90 and 100 were given gold Magellans. These entries were considered by the judges to be clearly excellent and the best of the best. Entries scoring from 80 to 90 were deemed outstanding work and were awarded silver Magellans.

Therefore, there might be multiple gold or silver winners in a particular category, or only silver winners, or no winners at all.