A casino or gambling house is an establishment that offers various types of gambling. It may also be a facility where patrons can enjoy live entertainment and other leisure activities. In the United States, casinos are most commonly associated with slot machines or table games like blackjack or roulette. The term is also used for video poker machines and other electronic gaming devices. Casinos are legal in most jurisdictions and may be operated by private individuals, corporations, or cooperatives. They may be located in or combined with hotels, restaurants, retail shops, and other tourist attractions. Some are known for hosting professional sports teams, acrobatic performers, and other events.

The primary economic source of most casinos is the income from their slot machines and table games. These games require a substantial investment by the patron, but produce a large amount of revenue for the casino with each spin or deal. This is in contrast to other forms of gambling such as horse racing, which generate much less income per patron and are not as profitable for the casinos.

To maximize their profits, most casinos use a variety of techniques to attract patrons. These techniques include reducing the house edge as much as possible and creating attractive gambling ambience through lighting and sound effects. In addition, casino staff will often share tips with other employees regarding the location of good machine payouts or hot machines for a bonus tip.

The typical casino patron is a forty-six-year-old female with an above average income. In 2005, these patrons accounted for 23% of all casino gamblers, according to research by Roper Reports and the U.S. Gambling Panel.