The World’s Most Famous Casinos


A casino is a gambling establishment where patrons place wagers on games of chance or skill. It is also a facility where entertainment is offered, such as music and dancing. Some casinos are also known for their luxurious accommodations and restaurants. Some are even featured in popular movies and TV shows. Here are a few of the world’s most famous casinos.

Table games are a key component of any casino, and some of the most popular include poker and blackjack. These games usually involve playing against other players or the house, and they require strategic thinking, decision-making skills, and luck to win. In addition to table games, many casinos offer a variety of slot machines and other electronic gaming devices.

In the early days of the Nevada casino industry, mobsters helped fund the first major hotels along the Las Vegas Strip and in downtown Reno. Legitimate businessmen were reluctant to invest in the tawdry ventures, which had the look and feel of criminal racketeering. The mobsters had no such qualms and became involved, taking sole or partial ownership of some casinos, using their ill-gotten cash to influence the outcomes of certain games, and intimidating casino personnel.

Most casino games have mathematically determined odds that ensure the house always has a negative expected value from the player’s perspective, which is called the house edge. The casino earns money from these games by collecting a percentage of all bets placed, or “the rake,” and charging commissions on some game play, such as in poker.

Some casino games, such as roulette and craps, have a very social aspect, with players interacting directly with each other or being surrounded by others while they play. Other games, such as card games and video poker, are played alone. Regardless of the game played, most casinos are designed to create an environment centered on noise, light, and excitement to attract gamblers and encourage them to spend money.

While casinos are not profitable for every gambler, they do make a profit from some, and their profitability is enhanced by offering free or reduced-fare entertainment, hotel rooms, meals, transportation and other inducements to big bettors. A recent survey by Harrah’s Entertainment found that the average casino gambler in 2005 was a forty-six-year-old woman from a household with above-average income. The survey also included face-to-face interviews with 2,000 American adults and a national questionnaire mailed to 100,000 adults.