“Magnificent B&B in a grand old house, bang in the middle of medieval Uzès”
There are just 3 rooms and 2 suites. They’re all divine, but the Studio Room (which we're yet to see) and Terrace Suites are just that tiny bit lovelier, with a little more space, bigger beds, coffee machines and Apple Macs for cool tunes and movies, plus suites have terraces. Having said as much, the smaller Standard Rooms come in the same grand style with crisp white linen on super-comfy beds and pretty art hanging on the walls. In lots of hotels they’d be the best rooms in the house, so you can book these knowing you’ll get something special.
The design is deeply attractive. All rooms are regularly refurbished and while they’re stuffed with 21st-century comforts, interior design is specifically intended to sweep you back a few hundred years to the days when the house was built. Period colours mix with old stone walls, you’ll even find the odd mural. There’s gilded plaster, original chequerboard floors, then magnificent high ceilings. Thick curtains hang across doorways, windows overlook the lanes, there are books by the dozen and candles on the mantelpiece. Drinks in the minibar (still/sparkling spring water and milk, plus fruit juice and Cokes in the suites) are free.
Funky bathrooms definitely belong to the 21st century. You get concrete floors, corian sinks, walk-in power showers and Miller Harris potions. All have robes, too.
Breakfast is served in the courtyard in good weather or in the dining room in cooler months. You get lavender-scented fromage blanc, fruit salad, baguettes and cakes, bacon and eggs if you want it. You wash it all down with fruit juice, strong coffee and Indian tea.
Gwilym cooks dinner a couple of times a week (by arrangement). He and Alexis had a small restaurant in Paris, both quitting 9-5 jobs to go it alone. His food is delicious and it’s well worth eating here if possible: perhaps carrot and chestnut soup, fillet of salmon in a lemongrass sauce, a plate of local cheeses, then lemon and lime cheesecake. He also whisks up fantastic Thai curries, so don’t be shy in requesting one.
You’ll want to eat out, too - Uzès has some excellent restaurants that don’t cost a bomb, and you can walk to most in 5 minutes. Le Bec à Vin, an informal bistro, serves great food at very reasonable prices. It’s open all year, has a terrace in summer, and the wine list is irresistible. You’ll get a good pizza and tasty pasta at Le Zanelli, or try Le Logis des Arts for simple food served in style with colourful art on the walls. For the best food in town - well, actually just outside town, a 10-minute walk - try L’Artemise, which, by all accounts, is heading towards a Michelin star.