A Casino is a place where gamblers risk their money on games of chance. They usually have a variety of games available and can be found in most countries. They may also offer hotel rooms, restaurants, non-gambling game rooms, bars, and other amenities. While some casinos cater to the rich and famous, many are open to the general public.
Gambling in some form has probably existed for thousands of years, with primitive protodice and carved six-sided dice being found at the most ancient archaeological sites [Source: Schwartz]. The modern casino, however, began to develop around the 16th century as a way to bring different types of gambling under one roof. The word itself is thought to have originated in France, but the concept was quickly adopted by Italy where private parties called ridotti were popular, and where gambling was largely legalized at that time.
While gambling in casinos is not illegal, there are some restrictions on who can play and where. In addition to age and residency requirements, some states also have laws limiting the type of games that can be played. Despite these restrictions, gambling is still popular around the world and is a major source of revenue for many governments.
Something about the presence of large amounts of cash seems to encourage people to cheat and steal, either in collusion with others or on their own. As a result, most casinos spend a great deal of time and effort on security. They generally have a dedicated physical security force as well as a specialized surveillance department.