A casino is a gambling establishment where people can gamble on games of chance and win money. Casinos can be found in many places, from the glamorous Las Vegas strip to the seedy pai gow tables of New York City’s Chinatown. A casino’s employees are trained to keep patrons safe and happy. They also have to be able to spot suspicious behavior or cheating.
Most casino games have built-in advantages that ensure that the house will always win, or at least lose less than the players. This advantage is known as the house edge. In some games, like poker, the house also collects a fee from each player, which is called the rake. Casinos may also offer free goods or services to “good” customers, known as comps. These may include hotel rooms, meals, tickets to shows, or even limo service and airline tickets.
Casinos are usually located in areas with high population density, and they attract people from all over the world to visit them. In 2002, about 51 million people–a quarter of all adults over 21 in the United States–visited a casino. Many of these people were tourists. The popularity of casinos is growing in other countries, too. From the luxurious hotels and restaurants of Monte Carlo to the glitzy slot machines and baccarat tables of Las Vegas, casinos have become popular destinations for people looking for excitement and relaxation.