A casino is a place where you can play games of chance and win money. Many casinos add a variety of other luxuries to attract gamblers, such as restaurants, free drinks and stage shows. The modern casino looks like an indoor amusement park for adults, with the bulk of the entertainment (and profits) coming from gambling. The casinos are often themed, and include structures such as musical fountains, pyramids, towers and replicas of famous world landmarks.
Although gambling likely predates recorded history, the casino as a place where people could find a wide range of ways to gamble under one roof didn’t really develop until the 16th century. At that time, a gambling craze swept Europe and Italian aristocrats often held private parties at places called ridotti. These were technically illegal, but the authorities rarely bothered them [Source: Schwartz].
The first casinos were built in Nevada, and a number of American states amended their antigambling laws in order to attract tourists and business travelers. Later, casinos were established on American Indian reservations, where they were not subject to state laws. Casinos also began to appear in cities such as Atlantic City, New Jersey and Chicago.
Gambling in casinos is a popular pastime for both locals and tourists. The games of choice are usually blackjack, poker and slots. Players may be tempted to cheat, either in collusion with others or on their own, but most casinos have security measures in place to prevent this. Cameras are located throughout the facility, and the dealers follow certain routines in a game that makes it easier for security to spot anomalies. Casinos also reward “good” players with comps, such as free hotel rooms, meals and tickets to shows.