A casino (plural: ca*si*nos) is a facility for gambling. The word is derived from the Latin casinum, meaning “house of games.” Casinos make most of their profits from slot machines and other gambling activities. They often provide entertainment such as concerts and dancing, and also have restaurants, bars, and retail stores. They can be found in many countries around the world.

Modern casinos are much like indoor amusement parks for adults. Musical shows, lighted fountains, shopping centers, and lavish hotels help attract customers. But the vast majority of their profits still come from the billions of dollars people bet on gambling activities. Games such as blackjack, roulette, craps and poker generate most of the revenue that casinos bring in.

The casino business is a highly competitive industry. Casinos compete with each other to offer the best amenities and facilities. To keep their patrons happy they offer a variety of complimentary services, known as comps. These can include free rooms, meals, tickets to shows, limo service, and airline travel. A high volume of play and a large amount of money spent at the tables earns a player a higher comp rating.

Security is a vital part of casino operations. Employees keep a close eye on patrons to make sure they are not cheating. Dealers can easily spot blatant violations, such as palming or marking cards. Pit bosses and table managers have a broader view, watching for betting patterns that could signal cheating. Casinos also use sophisticated technology to supervise the games themselves. Some examples are chips with built-in microcircuitry that enable a casino to oversee the exact amounts wagered minute-by-minute; and roulette wheels that are electronically monitored regularly to discover any statistical deviations from their expected results.