Casinos have come a long way since miners chasing gold in the West took weekend bus trips to play poker at local card rooms. These days, a trip to a casino is often a well-rounded experience that includes fine dining and entertainment options. In addition to traditional gambling, casinos offer a variety of video poker and other games like craps. These games feature in big Hollywood productions such as James Bond and Ocean’s Twelve, so it is no surprise that they are very popular among casino patrons.
Many casinos also boast elaborate surveillance systems that are able to provide security personnel with an “eye in the sky” view of everything that goes on in the building. These high-tech systems allow security to watch every table, window and doorway in the entire facility, with the ability to zoom in on specific suspicious patrons. In addition to these surveillance systems, some casinos have catwalks in the ceiling that allow security to look down, through one-way glass, on the activities of patrons at the tables and slot machines.
Local economies get a boost from casino development, and the money that players spend at casinos gets spent in local hotels, restaurants and tourist attractions. In some cases, the increased employment opportunities that casinos provide help to lower unemployment rates in the area and increase wages. However, these economic benefits are often offset by the cost of treating problem gamblers and the loss of productivity from their addiction.