What is a Casino?


A Casino is a facility where games of chance are played. It may also have non-gambling activities such as restaurants, bars and stage shows. Today’s casinos offer a variety of gambling opportunities including slot machines and tables where you can play poker, blackjack and roulette. Some casinos also feature entertainment such as a concert series with past acts like the Gin Blossoms and Survivor.

A casino’s business depends on attracting customers. Most casinos have a built in statistical advantage, called a house edge, over patrons’ bets. This advantage can be small but over time and millions of patrons’ bets it adds up. This money is what allows casinos to add glitzy buildings, fountains, pyramids and towers to their facilities.

Gambling is illegal in most states, so a casino’s legality depends on state laws and the willingness of local law enforcement to cooperate with the business. Because of this, most casinos are located in cities with strong police forces and close proximity to other businesses that can help deter criminal activity.

Many casinos have a security department to ensure that patrons are treated fairly. This is often a combination of a physical security force and a specialized surveillance department that operates the casino’s closed circuit television system, known in the industry as the eye in the sky.

Some casinos give out free goods and services to regular customers, such as hotel rooms, food and tickets to shows. This is called comping. These freebies are given to people who spend a lot of time and money playing casino games.