Rancho Mirage is one of the eight cities of the Coachella Valley (Palm Springs area). Rancho Mirage was incorporated in 1973 from a merger of Mirage Cove with five unincorporated areas known as the “Cove Communities” (Desert, Magnesia, Palmas, Tamarisk and Thunderbird).
Rancho Mirage has become known as a place where the rich and powerful meet and vacation. The Annenberg Estate or Sunnylands, owned by philanthropists Walter and Leonore Annenberg, has hosted many, including Frank Sinatra, Bob Hope, Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers, Queen Elizabeth II, and Mary Martin. Several United States Presidents have vacationed at the Annenberg estate including Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan and Gerald Ford. President Ford bought a house in Rancho Mirage and was living there at the time of his death in 2006. The Betty Ford Center is located in Rancho Mirage at the Eisenhower Medical Center and is a renown addiction rehabilitation center.
There are twelve golf courses in the Rancho Mirage. The city’s first golf resort was the Thunderbird Guest Ranch, opened in 1946 for entertainers and business clientele. Other golf resorts are the Tamarisk, Mission Hills, the Springs, Sunrise, KSL Resorts’ Rancho Las Palmas hotel, Rancho Mirage, Morningside, Mission Hills North Course, Westin Hotels Mission Hills resort, and Tuscania by Sunrise Company.
The Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians of Palm Springs runs the Agua Caliente Casino on the intersection of Bob Hope Drive and Ramon Road off Interstate 10, a thriving casino popular to locals and tourists alike. The resort now includes a 12 story hotel and spa as well as a state of the art theater.
Rancho Mirage has expanded its economy from one relegated to seasonal, resort-based to include high-end retail centers like The River shopping complex, opened in 2005 and built around an artificial river. There are many notable restaurants located in Rancho Mirage as well.
As of the census of 2000, there were 13,249 people, 6,813 households, and 4,074 families residing in the city. Rancho Mirage owes has a legacy of being a retirement haven for senior citizens since the 1950s. In 2003, Rancho Mirage was named the best resort town in the world by the London Imperial Traveler Magazine.
The median income for a household in the city was $59,826 and the median income for a family was $78,384.
The city includes one elementary school (Rancho Mirage Elementary) that is part of the Palm Springs Unified School District, Nellie Coffman Middle School on the city line with Cathedral City and three private schools: Maywood, Palm Valley and Xavier Catholic High in nearby Thousand Palms covers all grades. The PSUSD is building a new middle-high school complex, with an expected completion date in 2011 or 2012.
Kraft-Nabisco Open Golf Tournament
The Kraft Nabisco Championship is one of the four major championships on the LPGA Tour. It was founded in 1972 by Dinah Shore. The annual tournament is held at the Mission Hills Country Club in Rancho Mirage in the Spring.
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