A characteristic feature of Žilina’s Mariánske (St. Mary’s) Square are open arcaded corridors, known locally as "laubne". Arcades are integral to the laubne - arches between the columns. Žilina’s arcaded corridors are the largest and the most coherent complex of covered streets in Slovakia.
Žilina castle belongs among the greatest mysteries of the town. The castle appears for the first time in documents in 1318. Two written accounts of Žilina castle come from 1384. The castle disappeared from history in 1454. At present, the existence and location of Žilina castle spurs many controversies and debates.
"The old rectory", no longer exists as we used to know it. However, along with the Parish Church and later the Parish Stairs it was a dominant landmark in the area towards the river Váh. The building underwent many changes. It served its purpose almost until the end of the 20th century.
There was a municipal brewery in Žilina as early as the 17th century. Žilina’s beer was famous. Only certain homeowners had the right to brew yet the town of Žilina itself did not have this right. Brewing is no longer mentioned by the end of the 19th century. The brewery was demolished in 1925 and today only the name of the street – Brewery (Pivovarská) recalls it.
From the earliest accounts, Žilina appears as an important commercial centre. The most famous factory were founded during the Austrian - Hungarian era: The Hungarian factory for the production of wool cloth, military textiles and carpets; Hungária, a factory for artificial fertilizers; Žilina’s Factory for Matches; A plant for the production of cellulose.
From an economic point of view, the most important exhibition in the history of the town was the Žilina Industrial Exhibition (Iparkiállitás Zsolna). Initially intended as a local event, it became important for the whole of Upper Hungary. The exhibition featured 353 exhibitors and from August 1st until September 15th in 1903 it was visited by nearly 60,000 visitors.
Just as any other proper medieval town, Žilina had its own executioner who carried out the actual torture after sentencing. The executioner was considered an unclean person. He wore a wine - color hood on his head and aroused respect and fear. The symbol of the executioner’s craft was his sword.
The oldest park in Žilina - Millennium Park - was established in 1896 to mark the millennium celebrations of the arrival of Hungarians in the monarchy’s territory. Apart from the obvious political overtone it also had a positive impact on the town’s residents and visitors. The park was a green oasis bringing a gust of nature to the town.
The construction of old Žilina’s hotels began with the tradition of building inns for the needs of merchants and travelers. With the intense development of railways, the first real hotels began to appear alongside the inns. Among the most famous belonged: Hotel Rémi, Reisz, Hungária and Metropol.
In close proximity to the Church of the Holy Trinity (Cathedral) and Burian’s Tower is a building of the former Representative House. Today it is Žilina’s Town Theatre. Most likely a modest building stood here in the past, occuppied by Žilina Academy.
Time is a relative concept, and it was perceived differently in the past than it is today. In modern times we are slaves to time, but in the past this was not the case. Although time keeping instruments were already known in antiquity, they were a privilege of the rich. Ordinary people did not need to measure time.
Several extremely important events have occurred at Žilina in the town’s rich history, which an impact beyond the town limits. One of these was the Synod of Žilina. It all began on 31 October 1517, when Martin Luther presented his 95 theses at Wittenberg, originally intending to launch an academic discussion.
The Privilege Louis the Great bestowed on Slovaks living in Žilina in 1381 represents the first document, recording the national consciousness of the Slovak population in the country, and is also the first proof of national consciousness in Central Europe.
It is very probable that the town fortification had always been rather simple, consisting only of water ditches, soil ramparts and perhaps wooden palisades. A discovery of a stone structure near the parish church induced many associations about its age and mainly about its purpose in a medieval town.