What is a Casino?


Casino is a place that offers a variety of games that depend on chance. Casinos usually have restaurants, free drinks and stage shows to lure patrons. They also have special security systems that prevent theft and cheating. They usually employ a combination of physical security forces and specialized surveillance departments.

Gambling almost certainly predates recorded history, with primitive protodice and carved six-sided dice found in many of the oldest archaeological sites. But the concept of a casino that brought together multiple types of gambling under one roof didn’t emerge until the 16th century, during a European gambling craze. Then, wealthy aristocrats often held private parties called ridotti at their castles during their leisure time. While technically illegal, these parties were seldom bothered by the police and they became a popular pastime among Italy’s ruling classes.

In modern times, casinos are staffed by professional security personnel who monitor and enforce strict rules of conduct and behavior. In addition to physical security, they also use technology to supervise gaming activities. For example, ‘chip tracking’ uses microcircuitry in betting chips that allow the casino to oversee the exact amounts being wagered minute by minute; and roulette wheels are electronically monitored regularly to discover any statistical deviations from the expected results.

Something about the gambling atmosphere encourages people to cheat, steal and scam their way into a jackpot. These activities can cost casinos a lot of money, even when they don’t succeed. Casinos also tend to attract problem gamblers, whose addiction drains their families and local businesses of productivity. Consequently, economic studies suggest that casinos actually cost their communities more than they bring in.