In April of 2019, Stellarossa ventured into uncharted territory. We'd gathered all the necessary ingredients for a profitable and resilient business model that revolved around something that we just happened to be extremely passionate about - coffee! Along for the ride were experienced small business operators Jon & Donna from Sippy Downs on the Sunshine Coast, and together, we all took the proverbial plunge.


Extensive market research had demonstrated that there was a gaping hole in the market; the fast and friendly service of premium artisan coffee with fresh, house-made food through Drive Thru windows in convenient suburban locations. The ingredients for success in this space were grounded by our popular 5 Star locally-roasted coffee blend, and were bolstered by our extensive knowledge and passion for top notch guest service and delicious food. To be clear, not food that arrives at the cafe frozen and ready-made, and is then heated en masse to feed the masses. But rather, food that’s made by the local Stellarossa team members in each cafe, who follow specially curated Stellarossa recipes and use locally sourced ingredients to produce simple but distinctive grab-n-go magic.

As it turns out, the plunge has proven to be auspicious by the fact that 14 months later, we’ve opened the doors (and windows) of another two Stellarossa Drive Thru Cafes, bringing the current total to three. Add to that, 21 large-format suburban cafes that thrive in the heart of their respective communities, and we reckon we’ve formulated a network and brand that we can be genuinely proud of.

We’re honoured to say that Stellarossa Sippy Downs has gone from strength to strength since the get-go. Those ingredients we mentioned above were aided by a perfect location off the Sunshine Motorway and directly next to the University of the Sunshine Coast. Close enough to the beach that Jon can still have his morning surf and our famous black Stellarossa cups are a regular sight in the bins along Pacific Boulevard, but also near enough to the suburbs to be conveniently en route for thousands of daily commuters who rely on Stellarossa for their daily dose of golden-brown life juice.

The second Stellarossa Drive Thru raced to the finish line in Rural View, Mackay, just before the 2019 Christmas crazies kicked in. Mel had once owned three Stellarossa cafes in Mackay so she knew a thing or two. A few smart business moves made at the right time, mixed with a sprinkle of kismet and good fortune, meant that she just so happened to be in the right space and time to be a partner in Stellarossa Drive Thru number two in her hometown. This business took off at an energetic pace and has only continued to amass speed as it’s gone along. A favourite with the locals just as much for their big breakfasts and mugs of cappuccinos on the weekends as it is for the after school drive thru toasties for the kids and crucial 3pm coffees for mums & dads, Stellarossa Rural View Mackay is showing no signs of slowing down.

Finally, last Thursday saw the long-awaited opening of the Stellarossa Beenleigh Drive Thru Cafe. To say that this Drive Thru Cafe opened smack in the middle of 2020 – a year to go down in the history books, for sure – is probably all that needs to be said about the hurdles and build-up of anticipation that surrounded it. Small business consultant Katie, who was also no stranger to the Fast Food Drive Thru game, took the reins with this one and has raced the horse out of the gate at lightning speed. With her team of Drive Thru and cafe champions, and located on the newly upgraded and very busy George St in Beenleigh, we have no doubt this Star will follow the lead of it’s predecessors and be a beacon of light for it’s community moving forward.

We’re constantly innovating and honing our menus, operations, processes, equipment and procedures to continue to evolve and make the most of this Drive Thru space. We’ve got the balance just right for community-centered artisan coffee and premium fast food, mixed with first-class people and perfect locations. We have our sights set on more Drive Thru and Inline Cafe sites this year, and we’re on the look-out for the right people to operate them. If you think that’s you – we’d love to hear from you.

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