A casino is an entertainment establishment that offers gambling on a large scale. A casino’s gambling games may include blackjack, roulette, craps, baccarat and other popular table and slot games. The casino industry attracts a large number of people, and is a major source of revenue for many cities.

Although gambling in some form has existed almost since the beginning of recorded history (with primitive protodice made from cut knuckle bones and carved six-sided dice found at archaeological sites), the casino as an institution didn’t appear until the 16th century. A gambling craze in Europe at that time led to the development of gaming rooms that offered a variety of ways to gamble under one roof.

In addition to offering a wide variety of games, casinos also feature a range of other amenities to lure in customers. They often have a luxurious atmosphere with upscale restaurants, shopping centers and hotel accommodations. They may also offer special perks for “good” gamblers, such as free hotel rooms and meals, show tickets or even airline flights. Some casinos even have high-tech surveillance systems, where security staff can watch patrons from a remote room.

Something about the idea of losing money at a casino seems to encourage some patrons to cheat or steal. That’s why casinos spend a lot of time and effort on security. They use a variety of techniques, including cameras that can track every movement on the floor and a system that allows staff to monitor gambling habits in real time. In addition, some casinos have a team of security experts that are available to help problem gamblers.