What Is a Casino?

Casino is an entertainment venue that offers gamblers games of chance and, in some cases, skill. These games may take place in massive resorts like Las Vegas, or in small card rooms. In addition to traditional table games and slot machines, casino games also include lottery-type games such as bingo and poker, and keno. Casinos often feature high-end restaurants, luxury hotels, and spas.

Casino patrons generate billions in revenue for the companies, investors, and Native American tribes that operate them. Local communities reap some of this revenue in the form of taxes and fees. But critics argue that casinos shift spending away from other forms of entertainment, and the cost of treating gambling addictions offsets any economic benefits.

The average casino gambler is a forty-six-year-old female from a household with an above-average income. These adults make up the largest group of casino visitors. Casinos focus their marketing efforts on the people who are most likely to spend the most money. They reward these high-volume gamblers with free show tickets, hotel rooms, meals, and even limo service and airline tickets.

Something about the casino environment seems to encourage cheating and theft. As such, casinos invest a significant amount of time and effort into security. Floor employees are trained to spot blatant cheating, such as palming or marking cards or dice. Pit bosses and table managers monitor the action with a wider view, looking for patterns that indicate cheating. Casino security also includes armed guards, surveillance cameras, and electronic surveillance.