Dexter Filming Locations: Beach Birthday Party

DEXTER Filming Locations - hundreds of actual places where the TV show Dexter was filmed.

The location: Beach Birthday Party

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

    A. A beach.

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

    A. In Miami.

Q. When did we see it on the show?

    A. In Episode 12, of Season 5, "The Big One".

    Dexter has finally put Jordan Chase away, Lumen has left, and Dexter heads down to Orlando to attend his baby son's first birthday party, which is being thrown on the beach by his grandparents.

    We see a sullen Dexter walking towards the party area, still hurting from Lumen's departure.

    All of his friends and family are there: Debra (with Quinn), Cody & Astor (and their grandparents), Angel & LaGuerta, and Vince (with a date).

    Debra gets a round of applause as the detective who solved the "barrel girls" case.

    Quinn thanks Dexter for the blood work (revealing to us that Dexter lied to say that the blood on Quinn's shoe wasn't from Liddy).

    Dexter tells Debra that he doesn't like Quinn at all, but he wants her to be happy.

    Angel makes up with LaGuerta.

    Astor asks about Lumen, and Dexter says that she's gone.

    As he helps Harrison blow out the single candle on his birthday cake, Dexter muses that, for a moment, Lumen made him feel that he might have a chance to be human.

Q. What is it actually in real life?

    A. A beach - but nowhere near Orlando..

Q. Where can I find it in real life?

    A. This scene was shot on a round, concrete area (next to a small beach shack) on the beach near 700 Shoreline Drive, in Long Beach, CA.

    That's just southeast of the landmark Villa Riviera (which is at the corner of Shoreline & Ocean Blvd), and east of Linden Ave.

    The beach is just past the far east end of the Shoreline marina (and the very long parking lot that runs between that marina and Shoreline Drive).

    Go there, and you'll find a long concrete walkway leading south from Alfredo's snack stand (and the jogging path) out onto the sandy beach (not to be confused with the east/west jogging path).

    At the end of that walkway (about 280 feet out in the middle of the beach), you'll find a flat circle of concrete - about 60 feet in diameter, surrounded by tall palm trees.

    Originally, it was just plain, gray concrete, but they painted it (and the nearby shack) in rainbow colors for the show, and afterwards, the city decided to leave it that way.

    The producers also added the multi-colored canopy overhead, and the picnic tables (which are no longer there).

    They have filmed on this same beach before.

    Alfredo's, the nearby snack stand, was used in the taqueria scene where Debra met Anton.

    They also shot scenes here of Miguel Prado's beach fiesta, and of Dexter & Miguel sitting on the beach.

    I shot the photos below in December 2010:

    Here is an aerial photo of the beach circle. And here is a map link.

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

    A.  In previous seasons, I've usually had to hunt down the locations after viewing the episodes, using clues from the various scenes.  By the 5th season, though, I'd developed a small group of fans, spies & tipsters who kept an eye out for Dexter filming in their neighborhoods, and would let me know in advance when something was about to film there.

    Between those reports, and my own personal reconnaissance around town, by the time the first episode aired, I already knew most (but not all) of the filming locations, and only needed to watch the episodes and match up the scenes with the correct locations.

    This group of helpful fans includes Kerry, Rick, Joel, Geoff, Ellen, Julie, Susan, Jeff, and others. My thanks to all of them.

    This particular tip came from Ellen, who told me back in October that one of her Facebook friends, who is a set painter, posted that she had just spent a long day painting for Dexter on the beach in Long Beach. Further details followed: they were painting a shack and concrete area for the "beach party" scene in the season finale. And that it would be a permanent part of 700 Shoreline Drive.  (Thanks, Ellen!)

    Also, the scene itself provided plenty of clues: those Long Beach oil islands off the coast, the Convention Center in the background, the Ocean Blvd skyline... A trip down to the beach to shoot the photos you see above was all that was required.

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