What is a Casino?


A casino is a gambling establishment, especially one offering table games such as blackjack and roulette, or video poker. Some casinos also offer keno and other types of gambling. Casinos are usually incorporated with hotels, restaurants and retail shopping or are standalone facilities. They may also be located on American Indian reservations, which are exempt from state anti-gambling laws.

Although gambling probably existed as early as recorded history, the modern casino began to develop in the 16th century during a period of widespread gambling crazes. It was during this time that the word casino was coined. It was originally a small private clubhouse for Italian aristocrats who gathered to gamble during social occasions, called ridotti [Source: Schwartz].

In the modern sense of the word, casinos are designed as large indoor amusement parks for adults. They often feature a wide variety of gambling games, musical shows, lighted fountains, and other forms of entertainment, as well as hotel rooms and other amenities. The majority of the revenue that a casino generates is from gambling, but they also make money from food sales, beverage sales, and other sources.

Most casinos have a high level of security in place to prevent theft, fraud and other crimes. Security personnel are trained to spot suspicious behavior, and they often use cameras to monitor casino activities. Most casinos also have special catwalks that allow security to look down directly on casino tables and slot machines through one way glass.