The Treasure Trove by Gorilla Playsets is one of the top notch premium wooden swing sets out on the market. In fact, it made our Short List of the best large playsets of the year. Your kids will ogle the options on it and your bank account wondering if it’s worth the pain! This really is a fantastic playset worth considering, especially if you’ve got multiple kids or want to be the center of attention in the neighborhood.
You’ll notice that there are actually two Treasure Troves if you’re looking around. You’ll see the Treasure Trove I and Treasure Trove II - and you’ll probably make your eyes hurt looking for multiple differences. Don’t worry about it, the only real difference is the 14’ scoop slide from the upper deck. The Treasure Trove I doesn’t have it and for roughly $400-600 more, you can have it on the Treasure Trove II. We’re writing this review for both at the same time.
The Backyartisan's Verdict
Okay, let’s nail this all out - 2-3 slides, 3 towers, clatter bridge, picnic area, and so much more. But we help you dive into the next level of what to anticipate. You’ll see we’ve got weightings we think are important for each category in the overall rating - about 30% of the weight to the experience of the swing set before use, 45% to the play, and 25% to the value of the product. Here is the Backyartisan rating for the Treasure Trove swing set by Gorilla Playsets.
Shipping & Receiving
Shipping on any Gorilla playset is really a beast, but that is the nature of the… well… beast. I’m serious, shipping isn’t for the faint of heart on these larger premium playsets. Check out our other article about where you can learn more about what to expect here.
Our Treasure Trove verdict: If you’ve read our other reviews, you’ll know that this just isn’t a simple process. Honestly, I could really go with 2 stars here because it is just going to be a detail-oriented and sweaty process. With that said, I went with 3 stars because that’s just average in this market.
Trucking Company Appointments
The Treasure Trove ships via “LTL Freight”, which pulls up curbside at an appointment window. Depending upon how helpful the trucking company personnel are feeling that day, this isn’t the smoothest process, but it really is the cheapest. Curbside delivery is certainly more self-help than white glove service, but it comes at a much lower price. You’ll have to make a drop-off appointment with your delivery service.
Dealing with Pallets
This comes on a pallet that is 10’ in length and 40 inches or so wide. That’s a large pallet to deal with afterwards, so be prepared to un-band the shipment, take off pieces/boxes one by one, and then dispose of the large pallet.
Unboxing and Taking Inventory
This playset comes with 14-16 boxes (depending upon which roof you choose or if you get a treehouse kit). You’ll want to take a hard look around the delivery before cutting off the saran wrap or banding. Definitely have your camera ready - or phone… does any non-photographer still own a camera that doesn’t make calls? You’ll need to snap some pictures and immediately communicate with the retailer about any damage issues from the initial inspection.
In fact, snap those pictures regardless of any issues, that way you don’t have to play around with potential finger-pointing down the road.
Inside some of those larger boxes, there will be upwards of 50 additional pieces, bags, or smaller boxes. Also, if you ordered a Treasure Trove II, the large scoop slide should arrive in a bag and is likely not banded to the rest of the swing set. It can be common for LTL carriers to misplace this slide away from the rest of the swing set, so be sure to make a note and include that in your inspection.
Box Weight and Dimensions
The Treasure Trove weighs roughly 1,225 lbs in its entirety, once you remove the 100 lbs of pallet. The boxes weight on average ~80 lbs, but some are as much as 200 lbs. You’ll need that good friend(s) with you to lift off of the truck. Nothing should be longer than the 10’ pallet.
Also, the scoop slide on the Treasure Trove II is heavy, but with the plastic wrap can be easy to grip and drag across the ground.
Moving right along and getting through the ugly upfront parts of this premium playset, installation is definitely difficult. Lots and lots of pieces, lots of directions, etc. If you don’t think you’re up for the task, that’s okay. But do check out our article on installing it yourself before looking elsewhere. If you read that and decide you can afford to skip the headaches, check out our follow-up article on hiring a playset installer.
Our Treasure Trove verdict: This one takes some guts. The directions are good and can be printed in color (which can be very helpful in some diagrams). With installation services running $1,000 to $1,400, you may quickly find out why people go this route if they have the budget. On the whole, though, this is average for the premium sets and the directions are good, so we give it an average overall installation score.
The toolbox depth you’ll need isn’t great. You’re looking at a carpenter square, level, hammer, pencil, ladder, shovel, tape, and pliers - but then you get into socket sizes, drill bit sizes and more. Again, most of these should be in a fairly standard kit you’d find at the hardware store.
As far as a sizing checklist, you’ll need drill bits that are ⅛”, 3/16”, ⅜”, 7/64”, 9/64”, and 11/64” - but the one that is a little abnormal to have on hand is the 1” paddle bit. You’ll also need deep well sockets and wrenches that are ½” and 9/16”.
Ease and Timeframe of Installation
You know, the Treasure Trove can be pretty hard to put together by yourself, but it is doable. The boards are cut to size, the edges are rounded, you’ve got pre-drilled holes of course. You still do have a few holes to drill yourself, but most everything else is in place and this system is complex and detail oriented, but not necessarily impossible.
The manufacturer suggests that this could take 16 to 18 hours to complete. Gorilla is fairly notorious for underestimating their allotment for installation and assembly. They are trying to sell these after all. These are premium and well designed playsets, but they definitely take the better part of 3 to 4 days at 8 hours or more for this level of playset. Knowing that, you may look a little harder at whether or not you hire out assembly.
Quality of Directions
Gorilla generally makes up for these pre-playing headaches with a very nice product, and the directions are actually no skimping. The directions for the Treasure Trove playset are upwards of 200 pages. That is wildly detailed.
The diagrams in the directions are very good and come in color, which helps in some cases. It is very evident that an native English speaker wrote these instructions, which helps.
Here’s a point where the Treasure Trove I and Treasure Trove II differ. The Treasure Trove I installed dimensions are 19’ x 28’, while the treasure trove II installed dimensions are 28’ x 27’. That is due to the extra scoop slide coming off the upper deck of the treasure trove II. Both sets are 13 feet tall. You will want to add 6 feet around the entire set to leave room for running around. Once considering that, you’ll see this set requires a fairly large play area.
In terms of decades the lower two decks of the treasure trove is 5 feet tall and the upper deck is 7 feet tall. That 7 foot deck is primarily for the enjoyment of the scoop and turbo slides.
Stability & Durability
Here’s one are you’ll get a sense for the stability and durability of this particular playset. We try and look at different components and pieces to give you some clarity on what exactly this product will look like when completed in your backyard.
Our Treasure Trove verdict: This is where the Gorilla playsets really excel. After all, Gorilla really is at its core (and among the other brands in its family of brands) as a shed company. This Treasure Trove is no exception, it is built to last. Period.
Joints & Hardware
You will enjoy the thick and beefy hardware of the Gorilla brand. The Treasure Trove comes with top-notch connection points and hardware. All bracing and brackets are fairly thick and reinforced. You’ll find the plates and hardware weighty and secure.
In our experience, there is one particular plate that gives way if you have larger kids (or some crazy adults) that may give away on the turbo slide. I would highly recommend on the turbo slide that you stick with the weight allotment recommended by the manufacturer.
Screws are #8 wood screws and hex bolts are generally ⅜” thick. This is a little bit larger than what you’ll find across the industry, primarily due to the thickness of the boards. You are really getting something strong with this playset.
Gorilla makes all of their Amber post playsets with thick Cedarwood, which is generally the most durable wood in the place at industry. Main cross beams are 4x6” and supporting the posts are 4x4” making the system heavy duty.
Slats are 1.25” thick roof boards and other ancillary boards are an inch thick. Boards have all been sanded on corners and edges to make them smooth for children.
The plastic slides are fairly standard, though the scoop site on the Treasure Trove II is rotomolded and very durable. I would be personally surprised if you find a scratch or gouge in this particular slide through the shipping process. Otherwise, the wave slide and turbo slide are thick as well.
Wood Stain & Finish
You know, I’m never really a fan of wood stains on these Gorilla Playsets, but I know I may be in the minority there. Stain application here is smooth and overall well applied. Fine, I guess. Just not my style or choice of colors.
Weight limits are just calculated based on the engineering of the product specs. Platforms hold a total weight of 800 lbs. The rope ladder holds up to 75 lbs. Rock walls, all slides, and climbing ramps hold up to 150 lbs. Monkey bars max out at 175 lbs.
Belt swings have a stationary weight limit of 225 lbs., and a recommended swinging weight maximum of 150 lbs., while the trapeze bar has a weight limit of 125 lbs. In total, the maximum swing weight of the three swings is 425 lbs.
Well, you’ve put a lot of money and potentially time into your Treasure Trove playset. I would highly recommend at this point that she thoroughly inspect and take care of your playset. You should view this as an investment, as you could possibly sell it down the road. The manufacturer recommends re-staining and sealing from time to time, every couple years.
Make sure that you are keeping pests and water away from regularly attacking the playset. Of course, you’ll want to regularly replace the surface material around your place as well.
It always helps to check in on your place said joint connections and I would really recommend you review our playset maintenance checklist we’ve put together for you.
This section is where we will dive into the various elements, slides, and other options, taking into consideration social aspects and solo play for everyday use. You’ll find a better explanation about the roof and other options available.
Our Treasure Trove verdict: Gorilla has aptly named the swing set. The Treasure Trove has tons of options that your kids will love. A clatter bridge, a rock wall, a rope ladder, picnic table, lots of great slides - this swing set really has a lot to offer. You should really go to the details of this product page and check it all out. You’ll see why we give it 5 stars.
Ups, Downs & Acrosses
Here’s where we describe the many ups and downs of your swing set. In terms of climbing activities, you’ll find three distinct ways of getting up: the rope ladder, the rock wall with climbing rope, and the regular ladder. These all lead up to the middle tower at 5’ tall.
For getting off the swing set, you’ve got 3 great options. The turbo slide and large scoop slide come off of the second tear deck at 7 feet. The wave slide is across a clatter bridge coming off of its own 5’ deck.
Overall, there are 3 ways up, 3 ways down, and an awesome experience getting across the entire playset. I’d say that this is pretty well decked out.
You’ll find the typical Gorilla swing set layout with three swings on one crossbeam, two belt swings and one trapeze bar with rings. Standard feature Gorilla, but fairly nice with that trapeze bar for swinging around in the sun.
You won’t find a tire swing here, but you might want to replace a swing with a web swing frame.
Social Play Accessories
In terms of social play, Gorilla generally outfits their sets with some run-of-the-mill plastic doodads, like a Tic-Tac-Toe panel. The quality isn’t phenomenal on the plastic items. You’ll also find a picnic table where they can sit down together and enjoy a snack. Some pretty basic stuff, but it keeps children engaged and gives them something to do with their friends.
Solo Play Accessories
The solo play area has a sandbox, steering wheel, and telescope. Decent pretend items for fun, but you may want to add a dinner bell or chalkboard accessory to beef up your options here.
Roof & Kit Options
Gorilla offers a handful of different roof options across their playsets. The standard wood roof comes with a faux chimney, small dormer, and a few plastic Sunburst. They look okay, but not my favorite. Beyond the standard you do have a couple of other options, going in different directions in terms of price.
The vinyl tarp roof will save you a couple hundred dollars, but may require a little extra maintenance and even replacing from time to time. It doesn’t do the best job of giving coverage from sunlight and rain compared to the standard wood roof, but the tarp is fairly well constructed and should last as well as most tarps on the market.
Lastly, the Malibu wood roof is the upgrade. I can’t say that I actually understand the extra expense. It can cost $300 or more when compared with the standard roof. All it really does is add a few more dormers and plastic parts as well as a solar powered half-lantern. I’m not sure the price justifies the result.
You may also decide to look for a fort or treehouse option, as they add a little bit more privacy for kids on the upper decks. Depending upon your visibility requirements for watching your kids, this could be a fun little ad on for not much more money.
Price & Value
In this section we evaluate is the juice worth the squeeze. After all, the treasure trove comes at a fairly premium price. You’ll want to know is it all worth it.
Our Treasure Trove verdict: We score this at five stars because it really hits a lot of the highlights for what you’re spending on it. It doesn’t seem to undershoot what you should expect at this price point, well not necessarily costing you for things you don’t need.
We think that the treasure trove playset is a solid product. Gorilla playsets is a brand under a family of brands that generally sells sheds and structures. With that background, they bring a heavy duty stance towards the quality of their product and these sets are built to last. We know that Gorilla Playsets can last for up to a decade or more.
We know that the cost is in excess of $4,000 here, with some sets costing up to $5,000 with the scoop slide, but we are confident that you will get what you pay for out of this purchase. This product has been extremely well designed for the long term, and it comes with high-quality components.
You personally need to make the call about adding the large scoop slide and transitioning from a Treasure Trove I to a Treasure Trove II, but in general we don’t think you can go wrong at this price. Not sure I personally would downgrade the roof option to the vinyl tarp to save a few bucks. You’re already spending quite a bit of money on this and you’ll get more longevity out of your purchase if you stick with the wood roof.
Of course, you can get this with “free” shipping, but returns are difficult. You can easily tell that this is not a cheap thing to ship across America. It’s heavy, it’s bulky, and it takes a lot of labor to kit these boxes together.
You may consider going to a local warehouse to pick it up and save upwards of $300-400. The swing set would easily cost the free shippers $500-$600.
You should expect installation to cost $1,000-$1,200 for the Treasure Trove. When you get a sense from the directions and our review here of what goes into this playset assembly, I think you’ll see why it can cost that much. It can definitely be worth it but as you see, it increases your budget by upwards of 25-30%.
The Gorilla warranty backs the wood components for up to 10 years, but that doesn’t cover rot or decay. There are also some naturally occurring issues with wood that it may not cover as well. With normal wear and tear excluded, you’re really only having warranty coverage for gross defects.
There’s a one year warranty for all the other stuff: plastics, tarps, hardware, etc. This stuff generally lasts much longer than a year but that’s just where Gorilla is these days.
These warranties do not transfer from the original buyer, which is one reason why you’ll see a real drop off in value on the secondary market. This warranty is fairly average. Better than others, but there seem to be a lot of ways out by the manufacturer.
In summary, the Treasure Trove I and II by Gorilla Playsets is a fantastic play system. The front end experience of receiving in assembling could make your head spin, though. Once the Treasure Trove is in place, you’ll find that your kids love it and your investment will last a long time.
We also think that this is a great playset for a surprise as it covers many bases for children of many ages.
Thank you for reading up on the Treasure Trove by Gorilla Playsets. We hope that all us dads at the Backyartisan have been able to help you out with this comprehensive review.