A casino is a place where people play games of chance and gamble. Its a glamorous world that offers everything from stage shows to exotic locales, but even the most flamboyant gambling house has basic needs that must be met to manage the business of attracting and keeping customers who are gambling heavily. There are major security concerns, as well as food and entertainment requirements that must be managed 24 hours a day. Casinos need to keep an eye on everything from counterfeit money, people who are counting cards or using stolen credit cards and more. Cameras and security monitors help security watch the building, paper shredders and protective document boxes keep customer records secure and casinos need to check IDs of all people entering the premises.
Every game offered in a casino has a mathematical expectancy of winning or losing, but it is virtually impossible for a casino to lose all its money in one day if the patrons gamble within the established limits. This virtual assurance of a profit gives the casino an incentive to treat large bettors like royalty, offering them free spectacular entertainment, reduced-fare transportation and elegant living quarters. Casinos also use sophisticated computer technology to monitor the results of all games, and to detect any anomalies that might signal cheating or other irregularities.
While many casinos have a reputation for being seedy places with mobsters lurking behind the scenes, this image is more of a marketing problem than a real one. It is a matter of public perception and the image that the casino has to project in order to attract enough people to stay in business. The fact is, legitimate businessmen who had plenty of cash for investment were often reluctant to get involved with gambling establishments, which had the taint of vice associated with illegal rackets. Mobster money, on the other hand, flowed into Reno and Las Vegas with little concern about a gambling house’s seamy reputation.
The modern casino has become an international phenomenon, but its origins can be traced back to Nevada in the 1950s. That’s when the first large-scale casinos began to be built. As other states legalized gambling, the owners of these casinos realized that they could capitalize on the tourists who came to their region specifically to gamble.
Today, the modern casino is a multibillion-dollar industry that serves 51 million people around the world. These visitors can be found from the crowded tables and slot machines in Las Vegas to the dimly lit pai gow parlors of Chinatown. In addition to the games, these venues feature restaurants, free drinks, entertainment and dramatic scenery that helps to draw in customers. This article was adapted from corpora and other online sources. Its editorial content is programmatically generated and does not represent the views of the Cambridge Dictionary editors or the publisher. For more information, please read our terms of usage policy. If you are interested in reusing our content, please contact us.