What is a Casino?
A casino is an establishment where games of chance are played and the house, not the patrons, wins in the long run. Although modern casinos offer a wide array of entertainment, including musical shows and lighted fountains, they would not exist without the games of chance that provide the billions in profits they rake in each year. Casinos rely on games like slots, blackjack, roulette, craps, keno and baccarat to keep their customers gambling and generate revenue.
In order to maximize their profits, casinos take a variety of steps to make sure that the game results they are getting match up with the mathematical odds. This includes a system that prevents the house from ever losing money and an elaborate surveillance network that watches every table, change window and doorway. Casinos also use chips instead of real money, which makes it easier to monitor the amount of money that is being taken in and out of the casino.
Casinos are not immune from criminal activity and have a history of being used as a front for illegal money laundering and other crimes. Something about gambling entices people to cheat, steal and scam their way into winning. This is why casinos spend so much time and effort on security.
Although casinos have a reputation for being glamorous, there have been less extravagant places that housed gambling activities throughout history. The earliest known casino dates back to the 16th century and was a place where Italian aristocrats could find a variety of ways to gamble under one roof.