A casino, also known as a gaming establishment or a gambling hall, is a place where people can play games of chance for money. Successful casinos bring in billions of dollars each year for the companies, investors and Native American tribes that own and operate them. They also generate revenue for local governments through taxes, fees and other payments. Casinos may be large, sprawling resorts like those in Las Vegas or small card rooms operated by individuals. They can be found on land and on riverboats, as well as in racetracks, bars, restaurants and other locations.

A few states have anti-gambling laws, but most do not. Nevada’s first casinos opened in the 1950s and quickly attracted gamblers from around the world. Other states followed suit, and the industry became a major source of tourism.

The typical casino patron is a forty-six-year-old female from a household with an above-average income. She plays a variety of games, ranging from traditional casino favorites like blackjack and roulette to far eastern games such as sic bo (which spread from Asia to several European and American casinos in the 1990s), fan-tan, and pai gow.

In order to maintain the integrity of their games, casinos have a number of security measures in place. They use cameras and other surveillance equipment to monitor their premises at all times. Employees patrol the floor and look for blatant cheating or stealing, as well as betting patterns that might indicate dishonesty.