What Is a Casino?


A casino is a gambling establishment that offers various forms of chance-based entertainment. The casino industry is a major source of revenue for many countries. Casinos typically house a wide variety of games and provide services to both casual and serious gamblers. Some casinos specialize in specific games, such as baccarat, blackjack and poker. Others feature a mix of games, including keno, roulette and craps. Many casinos are also equipped with one or more restaurants, bars and/or coffee shops.

While casino entertainment includes musical shows, lighted fountains and shopping centers, the vast majority of a casino’s profits (and its employees) come from gambling. Slot machines are the biggest money makers in a modern casino, accounting for a significant percentage of all the money that’s bet on the tables. Craps, baccarat, blackjack and other table games account for the rest.

Casinos make their money by taking a percentage of the total bets on each game. The percentage taken by the casino is known as the house edge. In games of skill, such as poker, the house’s advantage is much smaller.

While the casino business is lucrative, it’s not without risk. Criminal activity such as cheating and stealing is a constant threat, and casinos take various measures to deter such activities. For example, most casinos have security forces that patrol the floor and a specialized surveillance department that operates closed circuit television. They may also employ a team of professionals who deal with suspicious or definite criminal activity.