A casino, also called a gaming establishment or gambling hall, is a place where people can play various games of chance for money. Most casinos have a variety of games like blackjack, roulette, poker and craps. Many also have restaurants, bars, and retail shopping. In addition, some casinos host live entertainment events.
Casinos are heavily guarded establishments. Since they handle large amounts of cash, both patrons and employees may be tempted to steal or cheat. To combat this, security cameras are placed throughout the facility and can be adjusted to focus on suspicious patrons. Additionally, casino staff regularly inspect the games to ensure honesty; in some cases, they even watch players from behind their backs to spot any improprieties.
Most casinos have tables for card and dice games, and some have racetracks. In the United States, these facilities are mostly found in Nevada and New Jersey. However, more states are legalizing and expanding their gambling operations, and Native American tribes are opening more casinos.
Although casinos rely on the element of chance to generate profits, they are structured so that the house has a mathematical advantage over the player. This advantage, which can be expressed as the expected value of a bet, is known as the house edge. In addition, some casinos encourage players to gamble by offering complimentary goods and services, known as comps. These include free hotel rooms, meals and shows. High rollers, or VIPs, are often given even more perks like airline tickets and limo service.