A Casino is a gambling establishment where people can gamble games of chance. Modern casinos are like indoor amusement parks for adults, with a major portion of the entertainment (and profits for the owners) coming from gambling. Slot machines, black jack, roulette, craps and keno provide the billions in profit that American casinos rake in each year.
While gambling in some form predates recorded history – primitive protodice and carved six-sided dice have been found at the earliest archaeological sites – the casino as a central venue for multiple forms of gambling did not develop until the 16th century, during a European betting craze. At that time, wealthy Italian aristocrats often held private parties called ridotti where they could indulge in their favorite activities, and while these were technically illegal they were rarely bothered by legal authorities.
Modern casinos use technology to help protect their customers, from the high-tech “eye in the sky” that monitors every table, window and doorway to electronic systems that automatically supervise game results and warn players of any statistical deviations. There are also subtler measures, such as the fact that a casino’s regular patterns of play – how dealers deal cards, where they place their chips on the tables, etc. – tend to create certain reactions and motions in the players, which security personnel can quickly spot when something is out of the ordinary.
From Las Vegas to Macau, the world’s top casinos pair high stakes with high luxury. In addition to opulent suites, spas and fine dining, many offer high-roller gaming areas where patrons can bet hundreds of thousands of dollars or more.