A casino is a gambling house where games of chance are played. Modern casinos often combine entertainment and dining with hotel and resort facilities. They may also include retail shopping and other attractions. The gambling industry is regulated in some countries.
Casinos can be found in many places, including Las Vegas, Nevada; Atlantic City, New Jersey; Chicago, Illinois; and other locations around the United States. They are sometimes located on American Indian reservations, which are exempt from state antigambling laws.
The casino industry has grown rapidly since 1978, when the first legal commercial casinos opened in the United States. The rapid growth of casinos has been fueled by the popularity of slot machines, which have become the largest source of casino income. Casinos also attract people who want to try their luck at other types of casino games, such as poker, blackjack, roulette and craps.
Security is a major concern for casino operators. In addition to well-trained staff, most casinos employ technology to monitor the games and patrons. These measures vary from basic security cameras to high-tech eye-in-the-sky systems that can be adjusted to watch every table, window and doorway. Chips with built-in microcircuitry allow casinos to oversee exactly how much is wagered minute by minute, and roulette wheels are electronically monitored for any statistical deviation from normal performance.
Comps (complimentary goods and services) are another important source of revenue for casinos. These can include free hotel rooms, meals, tickets to shows and limo service for big spenders. According to a 2005 study by Roper Reports GfK NOP and the U.S. Gaming Panel by TNS, the typical casino gambler is a forty-six-year-old female from a household with above-average income. These gamblers prefer to play on the tables and are more likely than other people to visit a casino at least once a year.