What Is a Casino?


A casino is a building or room where people can gamble and play games of chance. Modern casinos often incorporate hotel rooms, restaurants, bars, non-gambling game rooms and other attractions. They usually have a distinctive theme and are located in cities with large populations. Casinos are a major source of revenue for some states. This article discusses the history of casinos, their games and equipment, how they stay safe and the dark side of the business.

The elegant spa town of Baden-Baden, Germany, lured royalty and aristocracy to its casino more than 150 years ago. Today, this beautiful establishment is still one of the world’s finest. Its focus is on aesthetics and quality rather than quantity, with an exquisite collection of blackjack and roulette tables and 130 slots.

A player’s expected value at a casino game is always negative, and the casino’s mathematically determined advantage over players is called the house edge. In games where skill may be involved, the casino takes a percentage of the total pot as its commission, such as in poker or baccarat.

In the United States, the largest casinos are in Las Vegas and Atlantic City. Many casinos also operate in other locations, including Native American gaming facilities and some on cruise ships. Casinos are usually open to all ages and offer free entertainment and drinks for players. In addition to slots and table games, most offer a wide variety of sports betting options, such as football and horse racing.