A casino is a facility for certain types of gambling. Most casinos offer table games, slot machines and poker. Some have restaurants and bars. Many are combined with hotels, resorts, cruise ships and other tourist attractions. In the United States, the term “casino” usually refers to a large gambling establishment; in Europe, it generally indicates a small, private club.
A modern casino is a complex facility with a dedicated security force and specialized surveillance department. The security force patrols the casino and responds to calls for assistance or reports of suspicious or definite criminal activity. The surveillance department operates the casino’s closed circuit television system, a high-tech “eye in the sky” that monitors every table, window and doorway. This enables security personnel to monitor activities and track people who are suspected of cheating or committing other crimes.
The casino industry is a global business with operations in many countries around the world. It is an important source of revenue for many governments and is a popular entertainment destination. Casinos are regulated by both public and private entities such as states, local jurisdictions or tribal governments. They are also subject to regulation and oversight by gaming control boards or commissions.
According to Harrah’s Entertainment, the average casino gambler is a forty-six-year-old female from a household with above-average income and vacation time. In 2008, 24% of American adults visited a casino. This figure is up significantly from the 20% reported in 1989.