Casino is a popular source of entertainment for many people. These establishments feature a wide variety of games, and often offer a high level of luxury that can appeal to even the most refined tastes. While gambling certainly predates written history, the concept of casinos emerged in the 16th century when a gambling craze swept Europe. Venice became home to the first government-sanctioned gambling house, called a ridotto [Source: Schwartz]. The Ridotto allowed wealthy citizens to find a variety of ways to gamble under one roof. In the modern era, real estate investors and hotel chains have found that casinos are lucrative cash cows. They have also been able to purchase out mob-owned casinos and operate them without fear of mob interference.
Casinos are designed with specific goals in mind, and the best ones can keep their patrons entertained and forget that they’re actually spending money. They can create an exciting atmosphere with richly tiled floors and carefully chosen lighting. They can offer a variety of games that require minimal skill, such as slot machines. These machines use a spinning reel of various colored shapes that pay out a predetermined amount of money when the right pattern appears.
Casinos usually offer their biggest rewards to their most frequent patrons. These “good” players receive comps that can include free drinks and food, reduced-fare transportation, hotel rooms and show tickets. These perks can add up to quite a bit of money, especially if the player is a big spender.