What is a Casino?

A casino is a place where people play games of chance for money. Gambling games are generally played against the house and not against other patrons. Casinos typically offer a variety of table and card games, as well as video poker machines. A casino may also have restaurants and stage shows to attract more customers. Casinos make most of their money from slot machine gambling, although some have other sources of income such as a horse race track or a sports book.

A large number of people visit casinos each year. According to the American Gaming Association, about 51 million people visited a casino in 2002. This includes domestic and international visitors. The largest concentration of casinos is in Las Vegas, Nevada. Other major casino cities are Atlantic City, New Jersey and Chicago.

While some casino patrons cheat or steal, most do not, at least not on their own. Security personnel are always watching for suspicious behavior. They look for a wide range of behaviors, from the way a dealer shuffles cards or marks the dice to betting patterns. Casinos use cameras throughout the building, and some have an eye-in-the-sky system that can monitor everything from every room to every window.

Casinos try to keep their patrons happy by offering a variety of perks, or comps, that can be redeemed for free items such as food, drinks and show tickets. Comps are based on the amount of money a player spends and the type of game played. Some casinos even give limo service and airline tickets to big players.