A casino is an establishment where various games of chance are played. It is also a place where entertainment, such as stage shows and dramatic scenery, may be presented. Some casinos are integrated with hotels, restaurants, retail shops, and cruise ships. Casinos are located in countries around the world, including the United States.
Table games became popular in the seventeenth century and appear in paintings by Caravaggio, Hieronymus Bosch, Pieter Bruegel the Elder, and Jan Steen. A wooden table and counters have been found in the wreck of the Vasa, which was brought to Sweden in the sixteenth century. The games were not widely known in Europe until the 1700s, when they gained popularity with the spread of gambling.
Because of the large amounts of money handled within a casino, patrons and staff may be tempted to cheat or steal, either in collusion or independently. For this reason, most casinos have security measures to prevent these activities. These include the use of cameras throughout the facility, and rules of conduct that require players to keep their hands visible at all times during card games.
Casinos rely on gamblers to spend money on their facilities, and thus must attract as many of them as possible. To this end, they offer a variety of incentives to gamblers, called comps. These can include free hotel rooms, meals, tickets to shows, and even airline or limo service. The comps are given based on the amount of time and money a gambler spends at the facility.