Dexter Filming Locations: Johnny's Jet Skis


The location: Johnny's Jet Skis Rental.

Q. What is it supposed to be on the show?

    A. Johnny's Jet Ski Rentals.

Q. Where is it supposed to be on the show?

    A. Somewhere on the Miami coast.

Q. When did we see it on the show?

    A. In Episode 11 (of Season 4), "Hello, Dexter Morgan.

    Dexter is driving in his car, stalking trucker Stan Beaudry, when he receives an unexpected call from Arthur Mitchell, the Trinity Killer (who knows Dexter as 'Kyle Butler').

    Arthur tells 'Kyle': "I'm standing in front of your house."

    Turns out that Arthur checked Kyle's address, and when he went there (to kill him) he found out the address was really Johnny's Jet Skis, a dock on the shoreline that rents jet skis to the public.

    Arthur tells Dexter that he now realizes that 'Kyle' has been lying to him from the start.

    Dexter retorts that "in the grand scheme of things, being a liar isn't nearly as bad as being a pedophile." - which angers Arthur.  (Apparently, Arthur has no compunction about killing children and burying them alive in cement, but he resents the notion that he might sexually abuse them in the process...)

    Dexter continues to pretend that he is just a blackmailer, demanding $50,000 for keeping quiet about the child abduction he witnessed, planning to kill Arthur when he shows up to make the payment.

Q. What is it actually in real life?

    A. A public boat launch.

Q. Where can I find it in real life?

    A. This scene was filmed at the South Shore Launch Ramp, located at 590 Queensway Drive in Long Beach, CA, just down the road from the Queen Mary.

    Resembling a two-slip marina, it's a small, four-lane facility where weekend skippers hauling boats behind their vehicles can back their boats safely into the water. The launch is surrounded by a small, six-acre park (with a nice view of the city skyline across the bay) and a large parking lot.

    In order to make it look like a jet ski rental, they added a blue sign, a small white picket fence, a mailbox, a yellow post, and of course, jet skis.

    The bridge you see in the background is the Queensway Bay bridge. The bridge leads from mainland Long Beach (just west of the Aquarium of the Pacific), across the mouth of the Los Angeles river, over to the area where the Queen Mary and the Hotel Maya are located. The launch ramp is about 130 yards north/northwest of the (southwest) end of the Queensway bridge.

    You can also glimpse part of the downtown Long Beach skyline and the Parkers Lighthouse restaurant, on the other side of the bay.

    The launch ramp is located right next to (north of) a new Residence Inn Hotel at 600 Queensway Drive.

    I shot the photos below in Sept. 2008

    Here is an aerial photo of the boat launch. And here is a map link.

    They used this boat launch once before as a location.  It was the scene of the breakwater murder in Season 3, where the body of a young Hispanic man was found on the rocks.

    And this year they used the nearby parking lot as another location, Big Phil's Truck Stop.

    They shot several other scenes near the Hotel Maya in Season 2, including Dexter & Lila at a sunny poolside cafe, Dexter & Lila at an expensive restaurant after dark, and Doakes shooting a man aboard a boat moored at a local dock.

Q. How the heck did you figure out where it was?

    A.  This was an easy one. I went to this very same boat launch ramp last year and shot the photos you see above, since it was used then as the location for the breakwater murder scene. So I instantly recognized it when I saw it again.

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