What is a Casino?

A casino is an establishment for certain types of gambling. Its precise origin is unknown but it is known that gambling has existed in many societies throughout history, including Ancient Mesopotamia, the Roman Empire and Elizabethan England. Modern casinos are usually large complexes that incorporate entertainment, hotel rooms and restaurants along with a full range of gambling games. The casino industry is a billion-dollar business that provides employment to thousands of people worldwide.

Because of the large amount of currency handled within a casino, security is a high priority. Both patrons and employees may be tempted to cheat or steal, either in collusion or independently; casinos employ numerous security measures to deter such behavior. The most basic measure is the use of security cameras located throughout the facility.

In addition to security, casinos focus on providing perks designed to encourage and reward gamblers. These comps (complimentary goods or services) are often in the form of free meals, drinks, show tickets and room stays. During the 1970s, Las Vegas casinos were famous for their cheap buffets and free show tickets. This strategy was intended to maximize casino revenues by filling hotel rooms and gambling floors with as many people as possible.

In the twenty-first century, casinos are choosier about who they accept as customers and concentrate their investments on “high rollers.” These customers are frequently invited to gamble in special rooms away from the main casino floor, where the stakes can be in the tens of thousands of dollars. In return, these customers are given lavish inducements such as free luxury suites and limousine service.