What is a Casino?


The casino is an establishment that houses a variety of gambling activities. It may also offer other games of chance such as keno and roulette, or games requiring skill like blackjack and poker. The casino makes money by charging a rake, or commission, to players who make bets. Often casinos will add other features to lure gamblers such as restaurants, free drinks and stage shows.

The word casino derives from the Italian casino, meaning “little country house.” Originally it referred to a clubhouse where locals would meet for social occasions, but the modern casino evolved from gambling houses in nineteenth-century Europe.

Today, casino is synonymous with glitzy destinations that cater to high rollers with extravagant amenities such as private planes and Hermes and Chanel boutiques. However, there are many other casinos scattered across the globe that cater to a more diverse crowd of gamblers.

According to the American Gaming Association, approximately 51 million people, or about one quarter of all Americans over 21 years old, visited a casino in 2002. These visitors came from all walks of life. Some were from the rich and famous, while others traveled long distances to play in the best casinos in the world. From the renowned Las Vegas Strip to illegal pai gow tables in New York City, these exotic destinations are sure to take your breath away.