What is a Casino?
A Casino is a building for certain types of gambling. The modern casino is like an indoor amusement park for adults, with the vast majority of the entertainment (and profits for the owners) coming from gambling. Slot machines, blackjack, roulette, craps, keno and more provide the billions of dollars in profits raked in by casinos every year. Musical shows, lighted fountains and shopping centers help draw in the crowds, but casinos would not exist without games of chance.
Casinos are regulated and licensed by state governments to operate games of chance. They have strict security measures to protect patrons and employees from cheating or theft. Most of the security starts on the floor, where casino employees watch the games and patrons to spot blatant cheating such as palming or marking cards. Security personnel also keep an eye out for suspicious betting patterns.
In addition to the games of chance, casinos often offer complimentary items and services, or comps, to players who spend a lot of time or money at the casino. These gifts can include hotel rooms, meals, tickets to shows or even airline tickets.
Originally, the Mob controlled many of the casino businesses, but real estate investors and hotel chains with deep pockets bought out the mobsters and run their own casinos free from mob interference. Despite the huge profits casinos bring, studies indicate that they have a negative economic impact on local communities by diverting spending away from other forms of local entertainment and raising the cost of treating problem gamblers.