The Casino – The Place For Gambling Enthusiasts


From the bright lights of Las Vegas to the illegal pai gow parlors in New York’s Chinatown, casinos offer the chance to win big money. Whether they are in fancy hotels or run-down strip joints, their existence is based on one fact: people will always gamble. As a result, casino profits depend on an element of luck and a mathematically determined house edge. In addition, a casino must attract large numbers of people, so it employs many tactics to encourage gambling. These include noise, light and free perks like food and drink.

The concept of a casino is ancient, with primitive protodice and carved six-sided dice found in some of the world’s oldest archaeological sites. But the casino as a place where people could find a variety of ways to gamble under one roof didn’t develop until the 16th century, when a gambling craze swept Europe. Italian aristocrats often hosted private parties at places called ridotti, where they would bet on horse races and other events.

Today, there are more than 100 casinos worldwide, with nearly half of them located in the United States. In 2002, a total of 51 million people visited a casino, which is about a quarter of all Americans over the age of 21. Although casino gambling may create jobs, critics argue that the industry primarily draws local players, shifting spending from other forms of entertainment and undermining community economic development. In addition, the cost of assisting compulsive gamblers can offset any gains from the industry.

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