The modern casino is like an indoor amusement park for adults, with musical shows, shopping centers and elaborate hotels helping draw in the crowds. But casinos would not exist without games of chance, which provide the billions of dollars in profits raked in each year by US gambling establishments. Slot machines, blackjack, roulette, craps and keno are just some of the many games that can be played at a casino.
While some casinos rely on free drinks, stage shows and dramatic scenery to lure patrons, others employ more subtle means of persuading gamblers to play. Bright and gaudy lighting, for example, is used to stimulate the senses and make players feel more energised and optimistic. More than 15,000 miles of neon tubing is used to light the casinos on the Las Vegas strip.
A casino’s statistical advantage can be small (lower than two percent), but that little edge can add up over time as millions of bets are placed, earning the casino billions in profits. To help ensure their success, most casinos use sophisticated electronic monitoring systems that are able to track every bet made, minute by minute; and a computer system can instantly detect any deviation from the expected outcome.
Because large amounts of money are handled within a casino, cheating and theft are common problems. Both patrons and staff may be tempted to try and steal, either in collusion or independently, so most casinos have security measures to prevent this. Casinos also monitor their patrons through surveillance cameras.