What Is a Casino?


A casino is an establishment for certain types of gambling. The term is a portmanteau of sorts, combining elements of the French word for “house,” and the Italian word for “gambling room.” Some casinos are attached to hotels or resorts; some are located on cruise ships or in other tourist destinations, such as Monte Carlo, Las Vegas, and Atlantic City. Others are standalone gaming facilities, often located in remote locations.

While most casino games are based on luck, there is an element of skill in some. Some of the more popular casino table games include baccarat, blackjack, and roulette, all of which have mathematically determined odds that give the house an edge over the players.

Because large amounts of money are handled within a casino, security is a major concern. Casinos spend a significant amount of time, effort and money to prevent patrons from cheating or stealing, either in collusion with each other or independently. Security measures usually involve a combination of physical and electronic surveillance, and are augmented by human observers who patrol the casino floor.

While some casinos specialize in a particular game, most offer a wide variety of options for their customers. In addition to the classics like slot machines and table games, you can find more niche options such as poker or keno. Many casinos also have a full array of dining and entertainment options. Some are known for their glitz and glamour, like the Bellagio in Las Vegas, or for their historical significance, such as the Casino de Monte-Carlo in Monaco.