What Is a Casino?

A casino, also known as a gambling house, is a type of establishment that offers various types of gambling. These establishments are usually associated with hotels, resorts, restaurants, cruise ships and retail shops. The casino industry generates billions of dollars each year and is a major source of revenue for state governments, local jurisdictions and Native American tribes.

In addition to gambling, many casinos also offer other entertainment options such as live music and stage shows. Some also have themed dining areas. The ambiance of a casino is usually designed to be stimulating and exciting, with bright colors, loud noises and fast music. Many casino games provide a predictable long-term advantage to the house, but players with sufficient skills can eliminate this edge by making careful decisions. These skillful gamblers are called advantage players.

Generally, casinos are designed to maximize profits. High rollers, or those who bet large amounts of money, are often given extravagant comps such as free spectacular entertainment, limousine transportation, hotel suites and lavish personal attention. Smaller bettors are typically given a smaller variety of complimentary items.

There are three general categories of casino games: gaming machines, table games and random number games. Gaming machines, such as slot machines, are operated by a computerized system and do not require the involvement of casino employees. Table games, such as blackjack or craps, involve one or more players competing against the house, and are conducted by croupiers. Random number games, such as roulette and baccarat, are based on the selection of random numbers from a computerized system or other sources.