location: The Tampa Coffee Shop
What is it supposed to be on the show?
A. A hotel coffee
Q. Where is it supposed to be on the show?
A. In Tampa,
Q. When did we see it on the show?
A. In Episode 8 (of Season 4), "Road Kill".
Dexter and the Trinity Killer (Arthur Mitchell) wind up staying at a hotel in Tampa, Florida (where Dexter plans to kill him).
Dexter needs to go to a weather convention while he's in town (as an alibi), but as he's about to leave for the convention, Arthur unexpectedly joins him, and drags him into a bizarre visit to his childhood home.
On the way back, still needing to be seen at that convention, Dexter invents an excuse to stop at the convention's hotel, pretending to have heard about a great restaurant.
This scene begins with Dexter & Trinity seated in a restaurant booth, with Arthur complaining that he doesn't see anything special about a hotel coffee shop.
Dexter pretends he has to use the rest room, and instead ducks out into the hotel lobby, where the convention is being held. He signs up at the desk (proof that he attended), then he spots a local weatherman (Sonny Skies) and takes his photo with him (as more evidence).
Then he promptly returns to the coffee shop where he left Arthur. Only Athur (whose behavior has become more erratic) isn't at their table. Instead, he's sitting in a corner booth with some poor family, and has clearly been making them uncomfortable with morbid stories about his childhood experiences.
He's about to spill the beans on Dexter's own confession, when Dexter rescues the family.
Arthur responds "That was rude," as Dexter drags him away.
Q. What is it actually in real life?
A. A hotel. But not in Tampa.
Q. Where can I find it in real life?
A. Although this was supposed to be a completely different hotel from the hotel where Dexter & Trinity were staying, in fact, this restaurant this is really located in the lobby of that very same hotel.
It's the SeaPort Marina Hotel, at 6400 E. Pacific Coast Highway, in Long Beach, CA. And its coffee shop is now called Mosher's Gourmet Restaurant, one of a small chain of Mosher's delis in the Long Beach area.
The Seaport Marina hotel is located at the corner of Pacific Coast Highway and 2nd Street, near the Alamitos Bay Marina, and just over the bridge from Naples Island (where they have filmed a number of scenes over the years).
In the same Episode 8, they also shot the weatherman convention scenes in the lobby of the same hotel, next to the deli.
We also saw
this same hotel in Season One, on a couple of occasions. It was the motel
where Paul (Rita's ex) stayed. And they used the back exterior of the hotel
for the scene where Dexter scattered his father's ashes near a bowling alley.
I shot the photo below in 2007.
Q. How the heck did you figure out where it was?
A. I knew that they had used the Seaport Marina Hotel as the hotel where Dexter & Trinity stayed while they were in Tampa. So I suspected that the coffee shop and lobby scenes were also shot there.
(After all, why go to another hotel to shoot a hotel coffee shop, when they were already at a hotel?)
So I checked online photos of the hotel, and found that the coffee shop was now a deli named Mosher's, and that it was located in the hotel lobby. And both matched what was seen on the show.
But if that isn't enough...
Take a close look at the menu in Trinity's hands (in the photo to the right).
It reads "Mosher's".
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