A casino is a gambling establishment where patrons wager money on games of chance or skill. Games such as blackjack, roulette, and poker involve cards, dice, or the spinning of a wheel. Casinos also offer video lottery machines and other electronic games. They can be found all over the world. In the United States, casinos are regulated by state and local law. Some casinos are operated by Native American tribes and are exempt from state antigambling laws.

Gambling in some form has been a part of human culture throughout history, and casino gambling is a growing industry. Many modern casinos have a luxurious feel and are designed to appeal to the senses. They use lighting effects, smells, and music to create a mood that enhances the gaming experience. Many also provide food and drinks, which can be quite expensive.

Although there are no precise figures, it is estimated that over 51 million people visited a casino in the United States in 2002. Most of these visits were for recreational purposes, such as a night out with friends or family members. Some casinos even have special rooms for high-stakes gamblers, where the table stakes can run into the tens of thousands of dollars. These gamblers are favored by casinos, and they are offered free spectacular entertainment, luxurious living quarters, and reduced-fare transportation, among other inducements.

Because large amounts of cash are handled within a casino, both patrons and staff may be tempted to cheat or steal, either in collusion or independently. For this reason, most casinos have extensive security measures in place.