What Is a Casino?


A casino (also known as a gambling house, a gaming facility or a club) is an establishment for certain types of gambling. Casinos are often built near or combined with hotels, resorts, restaurants, retail shops, cruise ships and other tourist attractions. Casinos also feature entertainment events, such as stand-up comedy, concerts and sporting events. In military and non-military usage, a casino (Spanish: “casino”) is an officers’ mess.

A major source of casino profits comes from the “house edge,” a built-in statistical advantage that ensures the casino will ultimately come out ahead. This advantage can be very small, but it can add up over time to make the casino a consistent moneymaker. In addition to this, casinos generate revenue from table games that are conducted by live croupiers, such as blackjack, baccarat, roulette and craps, as well as video poker machines.

Casinos are an important economic generator for the cities and states they operate in. However, critics argue that the benefits of a casino are offset by the costs associated with gambling addiction, which diverts money from other forms of entertainment and hurts local property values.

Security is a big part of any casino, and its workers are trained to watch patrons closely for suspicious behavior. Dealers at table games, for instance, are accustomed to watching for palming, marking and other signs of cheating. More advanced casinos use technology to keep tabs on patron activity, with electronic systems in the tables that monitor betting chips minute-by-minute and alert dealers to any statistical deviation.

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