What Is a Casino?


A casino is a building or room where gambling takes place. Its customers gamble by playing games of chance (with some skill), including slot machines, blackjack, craps, roulette and baccarat. Some casinos also offer video poker and other electronic games. The house always has an advantage over the players, which is known as the house edge. This advantage is mathematically determined by the odds of each game. A casino may give out complimentary items or comps to its players, such as free drinks, meals and hotel rooms. It may also charge a rake, or commission on the bets made by its players.

Casinos often offer luxurious services and amenities to attract high rollers, who make up a large percentage of its revenue. For example, the Bellagio in Las Vegas has a branch of New York’s upscale Le Cirque restaurant and luxury boutiques like Hermes and Chanel. Casinos also host high-stakes games in special rooms away from the main floor, where the bets can be in the tens of thousands of dollars.

Something about the environment of a casino encourages people to try to cheat, scam or steal their way into winning. Because of this, casinos spend a great deal of money and effort on security. They use cameras that monitor every table, change window and doorway. They even have a high-tech eye-in-the-sky system that watches every square foot of the casino, and can be adjusted to focus on particular suspicious patrons.