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Rancho Mirage is a medium sized city in Riverside County, Southern California. The community is situated in Coachella Valley, and relies heavily on the tourist industry to power its economy. Rancho Mirage first became popular in the early nineteen hundreds, when a number of Hollywood stars such as Fred Astaire, Frank Sinatra, and Bob Hope began to frequent the area. The original residents of the Rancho Mirage region, the Agua Caliente Cahuilla Indians, live on a reservation close to the Rancho Mirage Area and maintain a casino facility in the Coachella Valley. Rancho Mirage covers a total area of about twenty five square miles, and has a total population of about thirteen thousand residents. The population of Rancho Mirage increases substantially in conjunction with the tourist season, which brings enough temporary residents to swell the population to more than twenty thousand.
President Gerald Ford lived in Rancho Mirage until he passed away, and the community is still home to the Betty Ford Center for rehabilitation and addiction treatment. One of the primary attractions of Rancho Mirage is its great selection of golf courses. There are currently twelve golf courses in Rancho Mirage, including Mission Hills Golf Course, the Thunderbird Guest Ranch, and the Westin Hotels Mission Hills Resort. Rancho Mirage is home to the recently opened River Shopping Complex, which includes a number of upscale shops and eateries in the middle of an artificial lake. Rancho Mirage has been recognized by a number of publications as one of the best retirement destinations in the world, and continues to maintain a number of retirement resorts throughout the city limits.