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What Is a Casino?

A casino is a gambling house, or a building or room in which games of chance are played. Casinos often feature entertainment such as musical shows and lighted fountains, and offer food and drink. Some casinos are also known for their upscale accommodations and amenities.

While glitzy hotels, musical shows and shopping centers help draw in the crowds, casinos would not exist without games of chance. Slot machines, blackjack, roulette, craps, baccarat and other table games account for the billions in profits that casinos rake in each year.

Although many people associate casinos with Las Vegas, there are several other notable casino locations around the world. These include the Monte Carlo casino in Monaco, the Casino Lisboa in Lisbon and the Bellagio in Sin City.

Because casinos deal with large amounts of money, both patrons and staff may be tempted to cheat or steal, either in collusion or independently. To prevent this, most casinos have extensive security measures in place. These start on the floor, where dealers keep their eyes on the patrons and tables to spot blatant attempts at cheating such as palming, marking or switching cards or dice. Pit bosses and managers also watch over the patrons with a broader view, looking for betting patterns that could indicate cheating.

In addition to security, casinos try to keep their patrons happy and coming back. To this end, they often give “comps” (free goods or services) to people who spend a lot of time and money playing their games. These can include free meals, hotel rooms and tickets to shows. Some casinos even offer limo service and airline tickets to big spenders.