What Is a Casino?

A casino is an establishment for gambling. Some casinos specialize in specific types of games, such as blackjack, baccarat or craps, while others feature a wide variety of games. In addition to gaming tables, they often include restaurants, bars and shopping areas. Many casinos also offer shows and other forms of live entertainment.

Modern casino facilities often include a host of security measures. The large amount of currency handled within a casino makes it vulnerable to theft by both patrons and staff. To counter this, many casinos use security cameras throughout the facility. In addition, all transactions are run through a casino management system (CMS), which analyzes and manages day-to-day operations.

Despite this, casino crime is still prevalent. Mafia money helped to finance some of the earliest Vegas casinos, and mobster involvement in casino operations continued even after Nevada made it legal for them to operate. The mobsters were not content with just providing the cash, and they often took sole or partial ownership of some casinos, and even exerted control over game outcomes through intimidation and violence against workers.

Gambling has been around for millennia, with the first known dice games dating to 2300 BC. Table games appeared in Europe in the 1400s, and card games became widespread in the 1600s. Some of the most popular modern-day casino games include slots, keno, roulette, baccarat and blackjack. Most of these games involve some element of chance, although some do require a degree of skill.