It is situated on the eastern side of St Mary’s Square near the town hall. In the eighteenth century, it belonged to the important Slatíni squire family of Žilina which included the mayors Ján and Ladislav. In 1779, the owner of the house was Zuzana Slatíni, at that time already married to Mikuláš Ségi. The house later came to Ján Kubíni through marriage. His heirs then used the house as security against a relatively high loan of 4,659 florins obtained from Anton Kalin, the mayor of Žilina from 1834 to 1838. Since the original owners were not able to repay the loan on time, after a seizure and payment of an additional 250 florins, the Kalin family became definitive owners of the house. In 1894, an inhabitant of Žilina, originally from Tešín, Anton Melzer and his wife née Ďurišová, obtained the house for the sum of 8 thousand florins. Their daughter Anna, married to Ján Masarš – Žilina stationmaster – and their son Anton Melzer junior became owners of the house in 1901. There was a shop selling various items in the house. The house belonged to the Melzer family until its nationalisation in 1962. As part of the restitution process, the family regained the house in 1990.
A book by a descendant of this family, Vladimír Melzer, was published about the life of the family and the house in which they lived entitled “The Little Shop on the Square”, Žilina 2011. The house is part of terraced housing on a long plot of land. In the centre of the building there is an atrium under which there is the original, probably Gothic, cellar. The house has two storeys and a facade divided into three segments with an arcade on the ground floor. There is a fold back staircase in the centre of the house with a modified skylight on the roof. The ground floor and first floor date from the nineteenth century. At this time the house had to be completely rebuilt after the fire of 1886. As a result of this reconstruction, the original house with Renaissance features was given an eclectic style with a classicist touch.
The composition of the decorative elements of the staircase unit with the skylight has common features with other similar buildings in the town, that is the application of period factory ready-made elements, the creator of which remains unknown to this day. At that time, the courtyard wing replaced an older building, originally agricultural buildings. In 1987, the building was added to the Central List of Cultural Monuments under reference KP no. 10038/0. In 1994 a wide-ranging renovation and reconstruction of the building took place using the plans by the architect Ľubomír Kružel. A new saddleback roof with a gable facing the square was added, and the outer façade of the house was renovated by restorers. The use of the cellar as a restaurant and the plastering of the stone walls, however, damaged the original quality of the space. The building is used as a shop and restaurant, and the attic is a guest house.
Source: Mgr. Jozef Moravčík, Mgr. Peter Štanský
It can be visited
■ exterior during a guided tour of TIO Žilina.