Hard work pays off sweetly for Cha Cha

Cha Cha Chocolate's sweet success

Cha Cha Chocolate started as an eight-week “Pop Up Christmas Shop” two years ago and has grown into a Bundaberg institution.

The store in Targo Street was the brainchild of Melanice Jacobsen whose family has been in the confectionery industry for 49 years.

Proud father Barry Jacobsen said Melanice was part of their family business, Jake’s Candy, since she was four years old.

“We started the business in a kitchen behind the house and when the girls were barely old enough to walk they insisted on getting up early, getting into old clothes and I’d sit them on stools where they’d cut up marshmallows with blunt knives to get skills,” Barry said.

Melanice and Dad Barry at Disneyland

Goal began at 10 years of age

Barry remembers that at 10 years of age Melanice announced she wanted to own her own chocolate shop.

All these years later, her dream has become a reality.

“Melanice thrives on hard work, knows just what to do at the right time and what people want.

“I’ve never been so proud of her as I have the past few years.”

Melanice now employs six people and is about to sign her second lease.

Cha Cha Chocolate mecca for sweet tooths

Cha Cha Chocolate has become a “destination” for tourists, as well as locals, and a mecca for chocolate lovers.

Meanwhile, the corporate market is also growing, with Melanice and her team making gift baskets for businesses, not only at Christmas but throughout the year.

“I like to bring in beautiful things that no one normally sees, as well as old favourites that bring back many memories for our shoppers,” Melanice said.

“Some of our product lines can only be found here.

“I think that’s pretty cool that a chocolate shop in Bundaberg is the only place in Australia where people can find some of these amazing chocolates.

“We now send chocolates around Australia and that’s something we’re very proud of.”

For those wanting to sweeten up their Christmas visit Cha Cha Chocolate at 23 Targo Street, Bundaberg or the website.