What is a Casino?

A casino is a building or room where various games of chance are played. The term is derived from the Latin casin, meaning “little house”. The world’s first and best known casino was the Monte-Carlo Casino, opened in 1863. Modern casinos are usually combined with other entertainment facilities such as hotels, restaurants, retail shopping, cruise ships and other tourist attractions. Many of these are located in luxurious resorts such as Las Vegas and Macau.

Most casinos are heavily guarded and have a high level of security. Casino staff keep a close eye on patrons to prevent cheating or stealing, either in collusion with other players or independently. Casinos also employ elaborate surveillance systems such as catwalks that allow security personnel to watch tables and slots from above. They also have cameras in the ceiling that can be adjusted to focus on suspicious patrons.

The majority of casinos offer traditional table games such as roulette, blackjack and poker. Craps and keno are other popular dice games. Many casinos also have sports betting facilities which can include American football, boxing and MMA. Other more unique games like baccarat and pai gow poker are also found in casinos. These are played against other patrons rather than the house and the casino makes its profit by taking a percentage of each pot or charging players an hourly fee. These examples are selected automatically from various online sources, and may not be representative of the opinions of Merriam-Webster or its editors.