A casino is a gambling establishment where various games of chance are played. These games include card games like poker and blackjack, dice games such as craps, and wheel games like roulette. In addition to the games of chance, some casinos offer a variety of entertainment options, including stage shows and restaurants.
The term casino is most commonly associated with Las Vegas, although casinos exist in a number of other places around the world. Some of the most famous are in Europe, and include the Casino de Monte-Carlo, the Casino Baden-Baden, and the Hippodrome in London.
While there are many different reasons for visiting a casino, the most common reason is to gamble. In fact, according to the American Gaming Association, about 51 million people visited casinos domestically in 2002.
Because of the large amounts of money handled within a casino, both patrons and employees may be tempted to cheat or steal; therefore, most casinos have extensive security measures in place. These measures range from security cameras to rules regarding the movement of patrons and staff. In addition, casino gambling is often a noisy and crowded activity, making it difficult for patrons to hide their actions from others.
In order to make a profit, a casino must pay for all the machines, equipment, and staff, so it must collect enough revenue to cover these expenses. This revenue is usually collected in the form of bets, or “wagers.” Those who place very high bets—often referred to as high rollers—make up a large percentage of a casino’s income and are given special treatment, such as free extravagant entertainment, luxury suites, and reduced-fare transportation.