A casino (or gambling house) is a facility for certain types of gambling. It may be combined with a hotel, restaurant, entertainment venue or other tourist attraction. Casinos may also feature live entertainment, such as stand-up comedy or concerts, and many have bowling alleys and other sports facilities. Some casinos, particularly those in the United States, are regulated by state governments.
The most famous casino is the one at Monte Carlo, opened in 1863 and still a major source of income for the principality of Monaco. Movie fans recognize it from the James Bond films Never Say Never Again and GoldenEye. This opulent palace features Belle Epoque decor, intricate architectural details and centuries-old paintings. It is the stomping ground of tuxedo-clad millionaires who relax in private salons and enjoy top-notch service.
There are more than 3,000 casinos worldwide, including a large number on Native American reservations, which operate independently of state anti-gambling laws. Casinos are often built near or combined with hotels, resorts and other tourist attractions, or are located on cruise ships. Many states have legalized or expanded casino gambling in recent decades.
Because of the large amounts of money involved, security is a key concern for casinos. Cameras and other technological measures are used to prevent cheating or theft by both patrons and staff. In addition, chips replace cash for betting purposes; this not only makes them harder to steal, but also enables the casino to track how much is being wagered minute by minute and quickly discover any anomalies.