A casino is a place where gamblers can play games of chance for money. Although gambling is not legal everywhere, it is very popular and has a long history. The word “casino” itself comes from Italy and originally meant a small clubhouse for Italians to meet in for social occasions. This clubhouse idea quickly spread throughout Europe after the closure of large public gaming houses, and eventually gave birth to modern casinos as we know them.
Gambling is a business, and like all businesses, it needs to be profitable in order to survive. That is why all casino games have built in statistical advantages for the house. The advantage can be very low (lower than two percent) but it adds up over millions of bets, and that is how casinos make money.
Many casinos offer special inducements for big bettors, known as “high rollers.” These special rooms are often separate from the main floor and can have high stakes limits in the tens of thousands of dollars. These high bettors are rewarded with free hotel rooms, meals, shows and limo service.
Most modern casinos have a physical security force and a specialized surveillance department. These departments work very closely together to prevent crime and keep patrons safe. The surveillance system is very sophisticated, and it allows security workers to look down, through one-way glass, on the action at every table, window and door. The video feeds are also recorded, so that casino employees can watch the actions of their patrons at any time.