What Is a Casino?



A casino is a place where people can gamble and play games of chance. It has a variety of games, restaurants and live entertainment. It is also a popular tourist destination. Some casinos are very large and have a hotel attached. Others are smaller and have a stand-alone gambling area.

There are three general categories of casino games: gaming machines, table games and random number games. Gaming machines include slot machines and pachinko, which do not involve human players but are operated by computerized equipment. Table games include blackjack, baccarat, craps and roulette. These games involve one or more human players competing against the house and are conducted by croupiers or dealers. Random number games are based on the selection of random numbers, either by a random number generator or by other casino equipment.

Casinos are heavily guarded to prevent unauthorized entry and robbery. They have special surveillance systems that record the activities of patrons in the casino. The recordings are kept on a central computer, and it is easy for security personnel to spot anomalies. The routines of casino games—how dealers shuffle and deal cards, the locations of betting spots on the tables and the expected reactions of players—also make it easier for security personnel to spot suspicious behavior.

While the modern casino has added a variety of other amenities to lure customers, it would not exist without games of chance. Slot machines, blackjack, baccarat, poker and other games provide the billions in profits that casinos bring in each year.