A casino is an establishment for certain types of gambling. Casinos are often combined with hotels, restaurants, retail shops or cruise ships. Some casinos are located in areas where gambling is legal, such as in Nevada or on American Indian reservations. Casinos may also be licensed by governments to operate legally.

Casinos rely on mathematics to ensure that they make a profit. Every game has an expected value, and casino profits are usually made up of large bets from rich patrons and small bets from less wealthy gamblers. These high-rollers typically receive luxury inducements such as free spectacular entertainment and transportation to and from the casino, plus luxurious living quarters. Less-rich patrons can be rewarded with comped beverages, meals and other amenities.

Despite their profits, casinos are vulnerable to theft and fraud by both patrons and staff. Casinos use a variety of security measures, including surveillance cameras throughout the facility. In addition, government regulators oversee and audit gambling institutions to prevent cheating and other illegal activities.

While Las Vegas gets the most press for its casinos, the state of Nevada boasts more than 20 of them. Some are located in upscale resorts, while others are tucked away in the desert. And while it might seem obvious, don’t forget to stop for a bite to eat before or after you hit the tables or slots. Many casinos offer buffets, restaurants and other dining options, providing a great distraction from the gambling floor or a place to commiserate with friends after a bad loss.