Fake'n Bake

Bummed that your consumption of babes in bikinis and sandy white beaches was limited to what you saw on MTV

Bummed that your consumption of babes in bikinis and sandy white beaches was limited to what you saw on MTV this spring break? Just because your spring break lacked a little in the Cancun department doesn’t mean other people have to know. Cambridge has a number of tanning salons that’ll turn your alabaster skin to bronze. Mix that Piña Colada, put on some Bob Marley, and get ready to fake ’n bake.

Boston Beach Club

1815 Mass Ave

(617) 864-7737

Welcome to the Mecca of Tanning. Offering the most comprehensive services of any tanning salon in the Cambridge area, Boston Beach Club is for those who treat tanning like a religion. The salon has the standard booths and beds in addition to two high-pressure beds called the Bravo and the Magna. Most intimidating is its Omega bed, which radiates strictly UVA rays at a price of $30 for a walk-in session. For the less hard-core tanner, Boston Beach Club also offers a sweet deal with which you can get two free sessions when you sign up for its $45 five-session package with its standard bed. Plus, 10 percent student discounts. Almost as sexy as your new tan.

Sun City

114 Mount Auburn Street

(617) 876-3222

Sun City is the dirty little secret of many a tan Harvard student. Literally tucked away in Brattle Square, Sun City has the most convenient location of the three salons. Though its location above the old Chili’s does seem sketchy at first, enter and you’ll find Sun City has a fairly pleasant ambience, a knowledgeable staff, and a great price list. A drop-in visit for a tanning bed will cost you $10, and one month of unlimited tanning is $61, but flash your student ID and you’ll get 20 percent off. While you may have to wait during peak hours, its vaguely baroque waiting room isn’t a bad place to cozy up with that rarely touched Moral Reasoning sourcebook.

Ultra Salon

1105 Mass Ave

(617) 876-8080

Before your next Sigma Chi party, walk across the street to Ultra Salon to get a tan that puts Greek gods and frat boys alike to shame. While it may only have two beds and one booth, Ultra Salon compensates with a staff that is incredibly friendly, helpful, and efficient. Prices are comparable to most tanning salons: one session in a bed goes for $10 while a session in the powerful Cyclone booth costs $12. The first tan is free with any package deal. Ultra sweet.