A casino, also known as a gambling hall or a gaming house, is a facility where people can gamble and play games of chance. Generally, casinos offer a variety of table and machine games such as blackjack, roulette, and poker. In addition, some offer sports betting and horse racing. Several countries have laws regulating the operation of casinos.
CASINOS PERSUADE PEOPLE TO GAMBLE
Casinos try to persuade their patrons to gamble by offering perks that encourage them. They provide free drinks and food, cheap or discounted hotel rooms, and show tickets. They use bright and gaudy floor and wall coverings that stimulate the senses and inspire excitement. They ring bells and clang coins to attract attention. They often have large crowds of people mingling together. They also use the color red, which is associated with wealth and prosperity. And they use a lot of lights—over 15,000 miles (24,100 km) of neon tubing lighting the casino buildings along Las Vegas’s Strip.
Some of the most successful casinos target the very highest-stakes gamblers, who can spend tens of thousands of dollars at a time. These high rollers are given special rooms and receive comps worth many times their average spending. In addition, casinos use computerized systems that monitor and track gambling habits of their patrons. These systems are designed to identify and reward frequent patrons, and they also help casinos develop customer databases for marketing purposes.
For a long time the Mafia controlled the casino business in Nevada and kept legitimate businessmen away, but when real estate investors and hotel chains realized the potential of the industry they became involved. Federal crackdowns and the threat of losing a license for even a whiff of mob involvement have kept organized crime from taking control of any casinos now.