What Is a Casino?


A casino is a place where certain types of gambling are done. It also often houses other amenities like hotels, restaurants, spas, and live entertainment. The word is derived from the Latin casin, which means “to go” or “to gamble.” Casinos are most frequently found in cities with large tourist populations, such as Las Vegas and Atlantic City, but they are also located in other major cities around the world, such as Macau, Singapore, and Monte Carlo.

A modern casino is a complex of rooms that contain many kinds of gambling games, including slot machines, blackjack, poker, roulette, craps and other table games. While musical shows, lighted fountains and lavish hotels help attract patrons, the billions of dollars in profits that casinos generate every year are generated by games of chance.

Because so much money changes hands in a casino, security is a top priority. To deter cheating and theft, most casinos use security cameras that are monitored by employees. Depending on the size of the casino, these cameras can cover the entire floor or be focused on specific suspicious patrons. In addition, some casinos use a high-tech “eye-in-the-sky” system that enables security workers to watch every table, window and doorway from a room filled with banks of security monitors.

In terms of demographics, the typical casino gambler is a forty-six-year-old female from a household with above-average income. According to research from Roper Reports GfK NOP and the U.S. Gaming Panel, about 24% of Americans reported visiting a casino in 2008. Many of these gamblers enjoy the luxuries that a casino offers. It is not uncommon for a casino to provide free meals and drinks, luxurious hotel suites or even private jets for those who play heavily.