What Is a Casino?


A casino is a building or room where gambling games are played. Modern casinos often incorporate a hotel, restaurant, retail shops and other entertainment attractions. Some casinos are operated by governments and/or tribal organizations. The casino industry is regulated by a combination of government-imposed laws and regulations and industry self-regulation. In the United States, a casino may be operated only in those jurisdictions that authorize it to do so. Many states have passed laws to regulate the operation of casinos, or at least prohibit them from interstate commerce. Casinos are also found on some American Indian reservations and are exempt from state gaming laws.

There are three general categories of casino games: gaming machines, table games, and random number games. Gaming machines, such as slot machines, are played by one or more players at a time and do not require the involvement of casino employees. Table games, such as blackjack and craps, are conducted by croupiers and involve competition against the house. Random number games, such as roulette and baccarat, involve the selection of random numbers by a computer or other device.

Casinos are generally considered to be socially desirable, as they provide a form of recreation and diversion that is relatively harmless and provides an opportunity for people to interact with others in a non-threatening environment. In addition, casinos promote themselves as glamorous and exciting places to visit, and many people feel that they contribute to the overall economy by encouraging tourism.