In the heart of this small city with a huge Roman amphitheatre,
Jardins Secrets feels like a wealthy artist's residence.
Framed by climbing plants and citrus trees, this converted 18th-century coaching inn feels secluded, though it's five minutes from the old town.
Breakfast is served in a lounge crammed with ornate clocks, silk-draped settees and birds in antique cages - or you can eat in the garden.
Bathe under a stained-glass window in the olive-green Alick suite, with views of the sunlit cloister, or slip into sleep on the ruffled-silk bed in Suite de Madame.
Stroll in the shade-dappled Jardins de la Fontaine, dine in the higgledy streets and sip a nightcap looking up at the nearby Roman temple, Maison Carrée.
WOW FACTOR: The candlelit spa room, booked exclusively, has a Roman-style plunge pool and Eastern massages.
GO: Chic Retreats (chicretreats.com) offers doubles from £173. Ryanair (ryanair.com) flies to Nîmes from £30 one way.