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What is a Casino?


A casino is an establishment for certain types of gambling. Casinos are often built near or combined with hotels, resorts, restaurants, retail shops, and other tourist attractions. Some casinos also feature a variety of live entertainment. Historically, the word casino has meant a large public hall for music and dancing; in modern usage, it refers to a collection of gambling rooms.

The modern casino is like an indoor amusement park for adults, with the vast majority of the entertainment (and profits for the owner) coming from games of chance. Slot machines, blackjack, roulette, craps, and keno provide the billions in profits that keep casinos going year after year. Along with musical shows, lighted fountains, shopping centers, and elaborate themes, these games are what make casinos such popular places to visit.

However, there is one thing that all gamblers should understand: the house always wins. Every game has a built in statistical advantage for the casino, known as the house edge, and it can be quite small, but it adds up over time. This is what allows casinos to invest in all that glitz and glamour, and to build enormous pyramids, towers, and replicas of famous landmarks.

With so much money changing hands within a casino, both patrons and staff may be tempted to cheat or steal, either in collusion or independently. For this reason, most casinos employ a large number of security measures. These include physical security forces and specialized surveillance departments.