Built within the walls of the ruined château of Cornillon, a medieval fortified village, with cobbled streets and ivy-clad ramparts, La Vieille Fontaine is full of charm. Patron and chef, M. Audibert, is a Marseillais; his gratinée de langoustines and chou farci à la provençale, accompanied by the local Tavel rosé, have long been the restaurant's attractions. The hotel is the creation of Mme Audibert, a native of this once semi-abandoned village. Inspired by the Louvre pyramid, she has, with great flair, clad the exterior circular staircase to the bedrooms with an elegant glass structure, at which one can gaze in wonder over breakfast in the courtyard.
  Her decorating style is simple and pretty: tiled bathrooms, Provençal fabrics, furniture from local antiquaires. One room contains a great chunk of the old château wall. Most have terraces; Nos 7 and 8 have views way over the top of the castle wall to the south. A steep flight of stone steps through terraced gardens leads to the pool: water gushes down from the hillside, and it is like bathing in a mountain stream.
  The welcome is spontaneous and warm, and dinner on the terrace looking over the hills and vineyards of the Gard is a delight.