A Casino is a place where people can play games of chance or skill. Many have elaborate decor and a wide variety of gambling games, restaurants, nongambling game rooms and other facilities. They may also offer free drinks, stage shows and other entertainment. Casinos are often built in tourist destinations and attract visitors from all over the world. They are often heavily guarded and have tight security controls.
In the past, casinos sought to maximize profit by filling their hotel rooms and gaming floors with as many people as possible. They provided perks like cheap rooms, discounted travel packages and free show tickets to encourage gamblers to stay longer and spend more money. They also used bright lights to attract gamblers and create a lively atmosphere. In the 1990s, technology dramatically increased the effectiveness of casino surveillance systems. Elaborate “eye-in-the-sky” systems allow security personnel to see all areas of the casino at once through cameras positioned throughout the building and on the ceiling. Roulette wheels and table games are monitored electronically to discover any statistical deviations from expected results.
According to a 2002 survey conducted by Gemini Research for the American Gaming Association, 30% of respondents reported visiting a casino in the previous twelve months. The majority of them chose slot machines as their favorite gambling game. Cards (including blackjack and poker) and sports/racing wagers were far less popular. In addition, many casinos have frequent-flyer programs that enable gamblers to earn a variety of rewards and benefits including free meals, drinks and other perks.