Here is a screen capture of
the first glimpse of the exterior of the crime lab, as seen on the "CSI: Miami",
in Episode 102 ("Wet Foot, Dry Foot"):
Miami? Nope. Try Hawthorne, California.
(The same building was used often in "The O.C." as "The Newport Group" building, where Kirsten Cohen worked.)
In real life the building is the administrative headquarters of the F.A.A. (Federal Aviation Administration) Federal Credit Union, and it's located at 14600 Aviation Blvd, tucked away between two Marriott hotels in what is known as Aviation Center, in Hawthorne, CA (on their western border with Manhattan Beach).
It is just south of Rosecrans Avenue and just north of Marine Avenue, on the east side of Aviation Blvd. To reach it, turn east onto a private street named Aviation Center Drive. The building is at the east end of that short street/parking lot.
The spectacular, 35,000 square foot building opened in 2000; it was designed by Nadel Architects Inc (you can see photos of it on their website, if you click "portfolio" then "public sector"). Made of limestone and glass, its 15 degree tilt to the west salutes the notion of flight - an appropriate touch for an Aviation office building...
is a private home. Do not trespass on their property,
"CSI: Miami" films almost constantly in Long Beach, all over the city, taking advantage of the town's shoreline views, waterfront homes, palm trees, marinas, and general resemblance to Miami. They're careful not to show any obvious Long Beach landmarks, but if you know the city well, you will be able to spot quite a few local spots when you watch the show.
For those of you unfamiliar with Long Beach, it is a large city 25 miles southeast of Los Angeles, bordered by the Pacific Ocean on its south side, by the Los Angeles Harbor on the west, and by Orange County on the east. It has a beautiful coastline that features the docked Queen Mary, Shoreline Village, the Aquarium of the Pacific, Craftsman homes, grassy parks overlooking the blue ocean, Naples Island (laced with canals and filled with multi-million dollar waterfront homes), a sandy penninsula dotted with beach homes, two marinas full of boats... plus a huge working port of its own - in short, an ideal filming location for this sort of show.
Here are just a few of the places in Long Beach where CSI: Miami has filmed:
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