Casino is a gambling establishment that offers patrons the opportunity to gamble and win money. Casinos may also offer a variety of entertainment, including restaurants, hotels and non-gambling game rooms. Casinos often focus on high stakes gambling, but some of the most exclusive casinos provide opulent suites, spas and fine dining, with the top casino destinations offering high-glamour thrills to a global clientele.
Historically, the casino industry was controlled by organized crime groups, but federal crackdowns and the threat of losing a gaming license at even the slightest whiff of mob involvement have kept legitimate business owners away from the mafia. Today, large real estate investors and hotel chains operate many casinos. Despite this, some casinos are still run by mobsters or their associates.
Because they deal with large sums of money, casinos have a strong incentive to keep their security systems tight. Among the most effective measures are video cameras, which can monitor patron behavior from inside and outside of casino buildings, and electronic surveillance equipment that can spot any suspicious activity.
Casinos also reward their most loyal patrons by giving them free goods and services, known as comps. These include food and drink, hotel rooms, shows, limo service and airline tickets. Generally, the more money a patron spends in a casino, the more comps they will receive. In addition to the obvious benefit of attracting more business, comp programs help casinos develop detailed profiles of their clients, which they use for marketing purposes.