A casino is a place where a variety of games of chance can be played. Its main attraction is gambling, and it is what brings in the billions of dollars that casinos rake in every year. Its other features – musical shows, lighted fountains, luxurious hotels, and elaborate themes help draw in the crowds, but the casinos would not exist without their games of chance. Slot machines, blackjack, roulette, craps, keno and baccarat are just a few of the many games that make up the casino’s gaming floor.
The etymology of the word casino dates back to Italy, where it meant “little castle”. It soon spread to Europe as people began to build their own private clubs to gamble in. As gambling laws tightened, more sophisticated gambling establishments came into being, with some even offering meals and drinks to their patrons.
Modern casinos are very complicated places, with high-tech surveillance systems designed to keep track of all the action. These are wired to a central control room where security personnel can monitor every table, window, and doorway from a computerized eye-in-the-sky system. Security personnel can also focus on suspicious patrons by adjusting the cameras to focus on their faces.
With such large sums of money changing hands within a casino, there is always the potential for cheating and theft, whether collusion between patrons or by staff. As a result, all casinos are required to implement strict security measures. These can include everything from a single armed guard at the front desk to video surveillance throughout the casino.