A casino is a building where people can gamble and play games of chance. A casino is also a place where people can find other forms of entertainment. Some casinos are very large, with a huge number of slot machines and tables. Other casinos are smaller, with a limited number of games.
Some casinos are themed and designed to appeal to particular senses or interests. For example, one casino in the United States is decorated with brightly colored lights and a stage for musical performances. The Casino de Montreal in Canada is known for its sleek design and wide selection of gaming options, including table games and slot machines.
Many casino visitors are high rollers who spend a lot of money. They may gamble in special rooms away from the main floor, where the stakes can be tens of thousands of dollars. In return for their high stakes, these players receive comps (free goods or services) such as free hotel rooms, meals, show tickets, and even airline tickets. Ask a casino employee or visit the information desk for details.
While gambling probably predates recorded history, the modern casino as a central gathering place for a variety of gambling activities did not emerge until the 16th century during a European gambling craze. At that time, wealthy Italian aristocrats hosted private parties at their villas called ridotti where they could gamble legally without the fear of the Inquisition. The idea soon spread, and by the 19th century, most major cities had one or more casinos.