The Murska Sobota Castle
The Murska Sobota Castle (the former Szápáry Castle) was first mentioned in 1255 as the Bel Mura mansion, where the Count Palatine and the Slavonic Ban Roland used to regulate financial and cadastral issues. As the administrative seat of landed estate it was given to the noble family Széchy in the late 14 th Century and in its place the family built a rectangualr two-storey renaissance castle with protruding rectangualar corner turrets in the late 16 th Century. In 1687 the castle was purchased by Peter Szápáry and in 1934 the Municipality of Murska Sobota purchased it from his heirs. The present look of the castle originates mainly from the early 18 th Century when the courtyard tracts were enclosed by arcades and both entrance portal were additionally modelled. The older concept of the northern portal and some hidden renaissance windows confirm that the northern facade is the oldest part of the castle which is nowadays ornamented by a baroque-like three-axis risalto. The eastern facade features a remarkable baroque portal from the early 18 th Century which originally had been a part of the Budapest palace Grassalkovich which was destroyed in the late 19 th Century. As regards the inside of the castle a remarkable castle reception room from the mid 18 th Century has been preserved, painted in the late-baroque illusionistic style with an iconographic creation of the peace allegory, believed to have been created by Johannes Pöckl. An interesting part is also the former castle chapel which is now used for wedding ceremonies. In the place of the former altar part there are 'dark' paintings by the local painter Sandi Červek arranged in a vertical axis. The castle also houses the Regional Museum of Murska Sobota
The Rakičan Castle
Rakičan was first mentioned in 1322 as Rekethye and as early as the 17 th Century it had acquired market rights. In the Middle Ages a castle is believed to have been located at the main royal road in that the first stronghold was first mentioned in 1431. Subsequent reconstructions have almost erased the medieval core of the castle. The noble family Batthyány used to own the landed estate for quite a long time and in the early 17 th Century it fortified the castle, due to Turkish danger. When the danger had passed the castle was thoroughly rebuilt in baroque style so that in the late 18 th Century the stronghold was turned into a country mansion that we know today. The relatively large inner courtyard is encircled by four tracts, which feature the central residential one-storey building. The turrets at the corners have two storeys and they limit the facade which features a representative entrance part, characterised by a richly ornamented front which is rounded off by two voluted wings with three stone vases at the top. The scheme of this risalto is repeated at the courtyard side where the main building is supported by strong arcardes resting on built columns. The other three tracts have only the ground floor and do not feature much ornamentation, except for a renaissance portal which makes access from the street side possible. With the departure of the last owners, the German noble family Saint Julien Walsee and due to tumultuous times the inventory has gone lost without a trace. It was only during the restoration during the latest decade that some of the ornamentation has been discovered, especially parts of the baroque stucco work. The castle is surrounded by a well-preserved English park.
Regional Museum of Murska Sobota
In 1955 the Regional Museum of Murska Sobota evolved from the collection of the Prekmurje Museum Society, established in 1935. The said museum is one of the renowned Slovenian regional museums, featuring a permanent exhibition on the history of the Prekmurje for which it was given a prestigious citation award by European Museum Forum; apart from the said collection the museum also organises thematic exhibitions and educational programmes throughout the year
The Gallery of Murska Sobota
The Gallery of Murska Sobota was established in 1978 to continue the programme of the former Pavilion of Architect Novak. The gallery is taking pains to create a permanent collection of contemporary fine art of Pomurje, apart from organising exhibitions of not only domestic artists but also guests from abroad. The European Triennial of Small-Scale Sculpture is a traditional event which the gallery has been organising since 1973.
House at Slovenska-Street 37
House at Slovenska-Street 37 was built in 1915, designed by the Architect Lázslo Tákács. With a slightly protruding part it leans against the neighbouring building. Its has been designed as a corner building, featuring the main entrance with a closed balcony in its central part, supported by two circular columns. The rectangular line of the windows is adorned by two wall fields ornamented by a sgraffito technique; these two fields are repeated above the windows of the main part of the building, and the corner of the building features a protruding semi-circular pier.
Zvezda Restaurant at Victory Square used to be a casino and Dobrai Hotel named after its owner Janos Dobrai. The one- storey historical corner building, with its main facade facing the Victory Square, was built in 1909. During the subsequent years the entrance underneath the balcony has been walled in so that only the main entrance has remained. The lively facade, adorned by vegetal ornaments, with the prevalent motif of vine, the repeated faces of a young man and an older man as well as other elements, is rounded up with a beautifully shaped garret console adorned with a wreath. Quite attractive building elements are also pseudo-baroque roof fronts with three-part window openings and turrets of various sizes.
Statue of Victory
Statue of Victory has been erected following the design by the Russian architect Arončik ; it is made from white marble and dedicated to the honour and glory of the winners of World War Two, i.e. the Sovjet soldiers and Jugoslav partisans. It was formally unveiled in the presence of the representatives of Allied Forces on 12 August 1945. It has been drafted as a tomb which symbolizes the walls of the Kremlin, with a sentry in front of it and a mighty obelisk above it, with an image of Lenin in the bronze medal. The Svojet soldiers who had fallen in Prekmurje, were supposed to be buried here but their mortal remains have been buried in mass graves of the Murska Sobota cemetery. The statues of both soldiers have been created by Zdenko Kalin and Boris Kalin and the guns on both lateral platforms are part of military equipment of the time. At the decline of communism when a lot of such monuments have been removed the above said monument has been preserved as a unique symbol of the town of Murska Sobota and its history in that it also preserves the memory of the victims of the war.
The parish church of St.Nicholaus
The parish church of St.Nicholaus, presently the seat of the Diocese of Murska Sobota, was first mentioned in 1297. The late-romanesque core with a belltower dates back to the late 13 th Century. During the late 14 th Century it was reconstructed into a three-sided presbytery with ribbed arches and decorated by two layers of wall paintings. The older layer is believed to date back to the mid 14 th Century and the later layer from around 1370 is believed to have been created by a Slovak painter.
The pyramid-shaped facade rises into the sky into a powerful 60-metre high bell-tower. The facade is characterised by a series of five niches with the Szápáry coat-of-arms and a semi-circularly drafted main entrance into the church with a stylised flower werath. On the inside the western part is closed up by an organ gallery. The three-nave division is in tune with pseudo-hystoricistic elements and the fittings originate from various Hungarian arts-and-crafts workshops. In the axis of the main altar there is a large painting of St.Nicholaus, the patron saint of the church, presenting the three virgins with gifts, created by Mattias Schiffer in 1797; the inside of the church is completed by glass partitions created by Kregar and Bizovičar. Instead of lateral chapels on the southern side, by the bell-tower, there is the sepulchre of the Murska Sobota count, the patron of the church, while on the northern side there is the oratorio of the Rakičan count with a baptistery and a vestry.
Evangelical Complex with a church
Evangelical Complex with a church was built in the years between 1907 and 1910 in neo-gothic style, designed by the architect Ernő Gerey. It has been completed by the two lateral one-storey buildings with emphasized corners and triangular roof-fronts with double window niches and turrets. The church has been built following the model of the church at Nagyvárad (Oradea); it is a brick building with three frontal turrets in that the central one rises to form the steeple. The rose window above the main antrance is repeated in the altar part, with a painting of Martin Luther. On the inside the ripped ceiling is supported by columns in that both lateral balconies along the nave and the organ gallery above the main entrance are also supported by columns. The architect has also drafted wall paintings on the inside of the church but the altar painting The Deposition from the Cross has been created by Jenő Bory.
Fun fact: The Gifts Of St. Nicholaus St.Nichoalus (Santa Claus), a bishop from Mira, Asia Minor, is the patron saint of the Murska Sobota minster where he can be seen in the altar painting, created by Matthias Schiffer in 1792. One of the most beautiful legends about St.Nicholaus has found its way into Sobota's coat-of-arms. He had presented three young girl with a bag of gold so that they could get married.
Source: Zavod za kulturo turizem in šport