About Us

When Seattle native Aimee Monihan moved to Costa Rica in the late 1990s, she had a dream: to combine her loves for travel and throwing fantastic parties into one unique company. She founded Tropical Occasions in 1999, as the country’s first wedding planning company. Since then, the company has orchestrated more than 1,500 events, across all parts of Costa Rica and in destinations around the world, including Central America, the Caribbean, Europe and the South Pacific. As part of the Destination Occasions, along with Denver-based Mountain Occasions, Tropical Occasions is still based on their founding principle: Love is at the heart of everything we do.

Our Philosophy

We believe in celebrating love, equality, and joy.

We believe in celebrating love and embracing the beautiful diversity of the world around us. We believe celebration is an art form, and that it should be meaningful but also fun, from the initial consultation until the last guest departs. We thrive on bringing your vision to life while joyfully managing any bumps or surprises along the way. Our purpose comes from

the knowledge that we are creating memories and bonds that last a lifetime. We know that the magnitude of any memory lies in the details and the seamlessness of the experience. We pride ourselves on going above and beyond to meticulously design, plan and produce one-of-a-kind events in beautiful locations, for an unforgettable experience.

Here at Tropical Occasions, we are all fellow travelers, life enthusiasts and lovers of celebration who view the world as one big backyard, and its people all part of one

crazy, vast, beautiful family.

Meet the Team

Here’s who makes it happen.

Aimee Monihan

Founder, Owner, Design Director

Aimee has been a world traveler since her pre-teens (eleven, to be exact), when she convinced a family that she’d make the perfect au pair for their European summer vacation. During her college years at Colorado State University, she signed up for every opportunity to study abroad, heading to Spain, Chile and Costa Rica to immerse herself in other cultures and perfect her Spanish language skills. Upon moving to Costa Rica post-college, Aimee decided to combine her love of travel with her passion for executing extraordinary celebrations. She launched Tropical Occasions in 1999, as Costa Rica’s first professional wedding planning company.

Aimee lived in Central America for over 11 years, before relocating to Denver to raise her young son. There, she added Mountain Occasions, to design creative, expertly thought-out events in the Rockies and parts West that were seamlessly planned and unforgettable fun. With over 1,500 weddings planned and executed with aplomb, Aimee and her team of creative partners have created a thriving, forward-thinking and highly esteemed destination wedding company that focuses on individuality, creativity and togetherness. Aimee is an avid skier, hiker and yoga enthusiast who manages to balance the needs of her clients with those of her family and close-knit community of friends and colleagues. She is still an avid traveler, always on the go visiting favorite destinations and scouting new ones for her clients.

Karen Ogden

Lead Planner and Director of Operations, Costa Rica & Central America

Every conceptual thinker needs a practical-minded partner to balance her out, and when Aimee met Karen, the fit was instantaneous. Canadian by birth, Karen hails from Vancouver, and left post-schooling in search of the sun. After living in Mexico and Guatemala, she made Costa Rica her permanent home in 2000.

Karen’s love and knowledge of Latin American culture, paired with her passion for production precision make her an intrinsic piece of the Tropical Occasions team. Her organizational skills are unmatched, and she never goes anywhere without her laser-beam leveler, which she uses to perfectly straighten chairs and napkins. Equally key is her tenacity in negotiating the ins and outs of Central American logistics and legalities. In her free time she can be found color-coordinating her Excel spreadsheets (we’re not kidding) and kicking back on the beaches of Manuel Antonio, her adopted hometown in the lush Mid-Pacific region of Costa Rica.

Amy Siudak

operations manager & lead planner

Originally from Illinois, Amy moved to Austin, Texas, post-college to begin a career in hospitality. Although she loved Texas, the mountains called and she was pulled north to Colorado a few years later. While working as an events manager for one of the region’s best-known caterers, Amy realized she loved doing events, and working directly with clients on everything from planning menus to suggesting decor and organizing the entertainment. In 2019 she joined Destination Occasions and has been a vital part of our team ever since. As our Operations Manager, Amy is all things logistics. To say she is obsessed with the perfect floorplan is an understatement. 

When not working, you’ll find her in the mountains—skiing in the winter, or camping in the summer. An unabashed lover of her adopted home state, Amy believes Colorado’s beauty and fresh air makes the whole world seem more alive, and she brings her passion for the mountain lifestyle to Destination Occasions’ mountain events.

Anahi Contreras-Denton

design & production manager

The daughter of a diplomat who took his family all over our beautiful globe, it’s hard to say where Anahi actually comes from. She has lived in Brazil, Japan, Paraguay, El Salvador, Belgium and the USA, and has made Tamarindo, Costa Rica her home since 2004. Thanks to her incredible upbringing she is a master linguist and negotiator. Fluent in four languages, she quickly adapts to the customs and protocols of any place she works or visits. Anahi is the team’s go-to expert on all things etiquette, forming tight relationships with vendors of all nationalities. (Her experiences helping host diplomatic events for the first half of her life has its advantages!) 

Anahi has been a member of the Destination Occasions teams for close to two decades, and between planning, producing, catering and floral designing, there’s almost nothing Anahi can’t handle. She and her husband, event producer Stephen, now summer in Colorado, avoiding the rainy season in Central America and joining the Mountain Occasions team on spring and summer events. 

Stephen Denton

Event production

The son of an American, yet Panamanian raised father and French Canadian mother, Stephen was born in Detroit and moved to Costa Rica at the age of 5 and has called it home ever since. After attending Florida State University, where he majored in political science, with a minor in philosophy, he went on to obtain an MBA from The University of Costa Rica. 

Stephen’s first passion is being in the water, and his first career was owning a dive shop on Costa Rica’s Pacific coast. Stephen’s second passion — his love of music, backed by his skills on the turntables — led to him DJ-ing at some Tropical Occasion events, and he now owns Costa Rica’s most successful DJ, lighting and lounge design firm. 

Stephen and Anahi, his wife of 25 years, split their lives between Costa Rica and Colorado, taking advantage of the two region’s alternating high seasons. He is the team’s heavy lifter, bringing untold knowledge to all of the events we do. With an ever-present smile and an infectious laugh, Stephen has an uncanny ability to keep everyone happy — be they clients, guests, creative partners or coworkers. 

Siobhan Smith

Event production

Siobhan was born and raised in Vermont but favors warmer weather, which led to her extensive travels throughout Central and South America and the Caribbean, among other places. A current happy resident of Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica, she loves sharing the beauty and culture of her adopted home. She has a BA in nursing and is certified as a Health and Wellness Coach — ideal talents to help clients balance out the stresses of throwing a destination wedding or event in a different country. When she’s not planning or producing events, you’ll find her reading, hiking, scuba diving and practicing photography.

Makeyla Luedeke

Event production

A Colorado native who loves to say “Roll Tide,” MaKayla graduated from The University of Alabama with a Bachelor’s degree in Human Environmental Sciences. When she interned with the Destination Occasions team, she discovered that she loves the world of events. Luckily, the team was just as in love with her and she now works full-time as an event producer. Makayla’s passion lies in both the artistry and functionality of design, and she channels her creativity into crafting furniture and engaging in various design projects. She finds immense joy in the process of bringing ideas to life, as a crafter, in home improvement, or building just about anything. As the team knows from experience, she is truly excited any time when she gets to visit Home Depot.

We are

lovers of adventure.