About

big ideas,
small team approach

our story

WINTER HOLBEN was founded in 2011 as an independent design firm by Principal and CEO Elisa Winter Holben. As her portfolio grew from wayfinding systems to top tier banking programs to community placemaking, so did her vision of creating a multidisciplinary architecture and design firm. Joined in 2015 by her husband, Principal Architect Brandon Holben, AIA, together they began making this vision a reality with a true commitment to design excellence and collaborative small studio culture. Since then, the firm has grown to a highly skilled team providing award-winning design to a wide range of clients across industries.

how we work

Our passion is bringing your vision to life through a highly collaborative approach. Whether you are a chef-owner building your first restaurant, a seasoned property developer, a museum director or a retail executive, we’ll help create (and elevate) the environments and experiences you’ve envisioned for your project. Our “big idea, small team approach” brings together a high standard of design with a friendly, customized process. We’ll have fun together along the way – our process for each project is unique, but always focused on:

  • Understanding your specific project objectives and vision
  • Analyzing contextual parameters and technical requirements
  • Delivering multiple ideas and iterating based on your feedback
  • Taking a consultative and communicative approach at every step

community involvement 

We are dedicated to the Seacoast Maine and New Hampshire region where we live, work and play - as well as to our global community of design professionals. It is a priority for us to engage with organizations that make the Seacoast (and our global design community) special, giving support through donations, board participation, sponsorship, discounted design services and more. Organizations we have supported include: 

3S Artspace
BIPOC Fest
Black Heritage Trail NH
Creative Mornings Portsmouth
Cross Roads House
Fair Tide

Footprints Food Pantry
Kittery Little League
PAVE 
Rice Public Library
Seacoast Science Center
SEGD

Shapleigh School
The Dance Hall
Traip Academy
USS Albacore Submarine Museum & Park
TedX Portsmouth