What Is a Casino?


A casino is a gambling establishment where customers can gamble for money. Some casinos also offer entertainment or other attractions, such as restaurants and shows. Casinos are located in a variety of settings, including hotels, resorts, cruise ships, and private clubs. They are usually surrounded by noise and excitement, and are designed to make people lose track of time.

Most games played in casinos involve some element of chance, and the house always has an advantage over players. This advantage, calculated mathematically, is called the house edge. Some games, such as poker and blackjack, allow skill, but most of the time the outcome of a game is determined by luck alone. The house advantage can be minimized by understanding the rules of the game, practicing with play money and using strategy.

Casinos spend a great deal of their resources on security. They employ numerous cameras, employees who stand at the entrances to monitor patrons and guests, and electronic systems that oversee games of chance and identify any statistical deviation from expected results. Most of these technological advances were developed in the 1990s, and have been instrumental in reducing the number of cheating and stealing incidents at casino tables and slot machines.

The average casino gambler is a forty-six-year-old female from a family with above-average income. This demographic accounted for 23% of casino patrons in 2005, according to surveys conducted by Roper Reports GfK NOP and the U.S. Gaming Panel by TNS.