Casino, also known as a gambling house or gaming establishment, is a place where people can gamble on games of chance or skill. Most casinos feature slot machines, roulette, blackjack, poker, craps, and keno. Some casinos specialize in specific games, such as sic bo, fan-tan, or pai gow. In the United States, Las Vegas is by far the largest gambling city, followed by Atlantic City and Chicago. Other large cities with casinos include Biloxi, New Orleans, and Reno. In addition to games of chance, many casinos have restaurants, bars, and/or shopping centers. Some also offer hotel rooms and/or other accommodations.
Because large amounts of money are handled within a casino, security measures are a major focus. Casino staff patrols the floor, and security cameras are located throughout. In addition to traditional security measures, some casinos use advanced technology: betting chips with built-in microcircuitry allow them to be electronically monitored minute by minute for precise wagering; and roulette wheels are inspected regularly for statistical deviations.
Although gambling probably existed before recorded history, the modern casino as a centralized location for all types of gambling did not develop until the 16th century during a period of intense popularity of gambling. Until then, people gambled in private clubs called ridotti, at home, or in remote gaming houses. Despite the presence of casinos, legal gambling is still illegal in most countries. Gambling is a lucrative business that brings in billions of dollars each year to businesses, investors, and state and local governments.