A casino is an establishment for gambling. It includes a full range of table games, slot machines and video poker machines. The term is also used to refer to a place where gambling is legal, especially in the United States. Casinos are usually built near or combined with hotels, restaurants, retail shopping and other entertainment venues. They may also be found on cruise ships and in military bases.

In the United States, casinos are licensed by state gaming control boards or commissions. These regulatory bodies create rules and regulations based on the state’s gambling laws. They also oversee the licensing of casino employees and vendors.

Casinos try to keep their customers happy by giving them free food and drinks. This can help keep players in the casino longer, which reduces the house edge. They also use chips instead of real money to make it harder for gamblers to track their losses. This also helps the casino keep track of how much money is coming in and out of the establishment.

Some casinos specialize in particular types of gambling. For example, they might focus on slot machines or baccarat. Others may offer traditional Far Eastern games such as sic bo, fan-tan and pai gow. In general, however, most casinos focus on attracting high rollers. These people spend a lot of money and generate a disproportionate share of the profits.

Something about gambling encourages people to cheat, steal or scam their way into a jackpot. This is why casinos spend a large amount of time, effort and money on security. They employ a variety of tactics, from cameras to sophisticated electronic monitoring systems. For instance, some betting chips have a microcircuit that allows the casino to monitor the amount wagered minute-by-minute.