A casino is an establishment for certain types of gambling. It may also be combined with hotels, restaurants, retail shopping, cruise ships or other tourist attractions. It may be named after a famous location or a well-known person. It may be designed in a variety of architectural styles.

Although musical shows, lighted fountains and fancy hotels help attract gamblers, casinos would not exist without games of chance. Slot machines, blackjack, roulette, craps and other popular games are what make up the billions in profits raked in by American casinos each year.

Casinos are often located in cities that are not primarily known for gambling, but this is changing as more states legalize them and compete with each other for tourists. There is a growing concern that casinos harm communities by shifting spending away from other forms of entertainment and that the costs of treating gambling addictions offset any economic gains.

Security is a major concern for casino operators. In modern times, this is usually split between a physical security force and a specialized surveillance department. The latter uses closed circuit television to monitor the casino floor for suspicious or definite criminal activity. In addition to this, staff on the casino floor watch for patterns in betting habits that could be a sign of cheating or other types of abuse. In the case of table games, such as poker, pit bosses and managers have a more sweeping view of the area to spot any suspicious activity.