What Is a Casino?

A casino is a facility for certain types of gambling. Casinos are often built near or combined with hotels, resorts, restaurants, retail shops, and other tourist attractions. Some casinos are also known for hosting entertainment events, such as musical performances and stand-up comedy. In addition to gambling, some casinos offer other amenities such as spas and luxury rooms.

The games played in a casino are based on chance and, in some cases, skill. Casino patrons place bets on these games with a variety of methods, including putting money in envelopes, dropping a coin into a glass, or spinning a wheel. Some of these games are purely random, such as roulette and baccarat. Others involve a small element of skill, such as blackjack and video poker. In many games, the house has a mathematical advantage over players, which can be expressed as the expected value of a bet.

Casinos are designed to be profitable, and this is largely achieved through the use of security measures. Because of the large amounts of money handled within a casino, both patrons and staff may be tempted to cheat or steal, either in collusion with each other or independently; this is prevented by the use of cameras and other technological measures.

Casinos typically have a security force and a specialized surveillance department, which work closely together. The security force patrols the casino and responds to calls for assistance or reports of suspicious or definite criminal activity. The surveillance department operates the casino’s closed circuit television system, which is used for surveillance and security.