A casino is an establishment for certain types of gambling. The term is also used for a group of related buildings or rooms, especially in the case of large resorts and cities. It can also refer to a facility for certain kinds of entertainment, such as concerts and stand-up comedy. It can also refer to an officers’ club in military and non-military usage.

The word casino was derived from the Italian casin, meaning “little house.” Casinos were originally small clubs for people to meet for social occasions, and over time they became increasingly popular. The development of more sophisticated card games, and the increasing affluence of society, contributed to their growth.

As casinos grew in popularity, they began to spread throughout the world. In the United States, the first casinos appeared on American Indian reservations in the 1980s. Atlantic City, New Jersey, and Iowa legalized casinos, and they soon spread to other areas of the country. Casinos also appeared in Latin America and Europe.

Because casinos handle large amounts of money, both patrons and employees may be tempted to cheat or steal. To prevent this, casinos employ a variety of security measures. For example, dealers are heavily monitored while they work and can be easily tipped off to blatant tricks like palming cards or marking dice. Elaborate surveillance systems provide a high-tech eye in the sky and can be adjusted to focus on suspicious patrons by security workers in a room filled with banks of monitors.