A casino, also known as a gambling house or a gaming establishment, is a place where people play various games of chance for money. It may be a standalone building or part of larger entertainment complexes, and it can serve as a tourist attraction or form of recreation for locals and visitors. Casinos can also host live entertainment events, such as stand-up comedy and concerts. Some casinos are owned by governments and run as public enterprises, while others are operated by private businesses. In the United States, Las Vegas is the largest casino market, followed by Atlantic City and Chicago. Native American casinos have also grown in number.
Something about gambling seems to encourage people to cheat, steal and scam their way to a jackpot instead of trying to win through random chance. This is why casinos spend a lot of time and money on security.
Security starts on the casino floor, where employees keep their eyes on patrons and games to make sure things go as they should. Dealers have a narrow field of vision and can easily spot blatant cheating like palming, marking or switching cards and dice. Table managers and pit bosses have a wider view of the tables and can spot betting patterns that might indicate cheating.
Casinos are also big on customer service, offering perks to frequent gamblers in the hopes that they will spend more and bring their friends with them. For example, many casinos offer free rooms and meals to gamblers who meet certain spending requirements. These perks are known as comps. Critics point out that these perks drain the local economy by shifting spending from other forms of entertainment to the casinos; they also argue that the costs of treating problem gambling addiction reverse any economic gains the casinos might generate.