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What is a Casino?

What is a Casino?

A Casino is a gambling establishment that has a large variety of games of chance for patrons to gamble in. These include slots, baccarat, blackjack, roulette, craps and keno. Casinos also offer entertainment in the form of concerts and shows and dining with gourmet cuisine. The etymology of the word “casino” is traced back to Italy, where many Italian aristocrats used to hold private parties in such venues as Ridotti [Source: Schwartz].

Modern casinos are often huge complexes, resembling an indoor amusement park for adults with fountains, shopping centers and elaborate hotels. The vast majority of the profits, however, come from gambling. Slot machines, keno and the other popular games provide billions in profit for casino owners.

Because every game of chance has a built in statistical advantage for the casino, it is very difficult to win more than the casino can pay out. Therefore, to offset the risk of losing more than they can afford to pay out, casinos must impose a percentage fee on all bets placed. The exact amount varies from game to game, but is usually in the range of two percent.

Casinos use a wide variety of security measures to prevent cheating and other violations of the rules. Besides cameras, they have employees monitoring patrons to spot potential problems. For example, a dealer’s eye is constantly focused on the cards and dice in play to see if they are being marked, switched or palmed. Table managers and pit bosses have a wider view of the games, keeping tabs on the betting patterns of patrons for any suspicious activity.