Greg Truslow has a busy wife and a busy sister. Looking for a present for each of them recently, the insurance man came across what he thinks is the perfect gift: time.

Battani, a Florida transplant, says she provides the services of an anywhere, anytime executive assistant, one that's only on the payroll for short spells of time.

Battani joins Carol Ellis, the proprietor of the recently opened Luxury-Domain, as area entrepreneurs promising to give people more hours in the day, the one thing they say no one else can give them.

While both Battani and Ellis are happy to build their fledgling businesses of the hectic pace of modern life, neither is entirely certain how everyone became so busy in the first place.

"I think they just want to be everything to everybody, and they put themselves last on the list," Battani said. "They want to please everybody during the course of the day."

"I think it's a whole materialistic thing. People need to make money to support a lifestyle," Ellis said. "People are just stretched. The culture has become so hurried and so about the end. People don't take time to enjoy the journey."

Concierge-type businesses have seen considerable growth in recent years, and are considered to have become a $1 billion industry, according to the International Concierge and Errand Association, which maintains a database including concierges in most states in the union.

"Basically, it's a person that caters to an individual's needs, whether it's a stay-at-home mom with four or five kids or a business executive."

Ann Marie Ray, a Lasik coordinator at Whitten-Perraut Laser Eye, said her business often called Battani to fetch lunch on time-pressed surgery days.

Ellis, a Nelson County native who recently moved back to the area from Tennessee, has a broader vision for her "still evolving" business, offering herself as an "extension" of a time-strapped client, regardless of the task.

If a client needed home decorating done, for instance, Ellis said she'd serve as a bridge between decorator and client, absorbing the client's ideas and ensuring that they were properly carried out by the decorator.

"I'm just a liaison between people," said Ellis, who says that Luxury-Domain means "giving yourself the luxury of having time to do the things you want to do."

Following a tumultuous recent interstate move, Ellis also plans to offer her services to people going through similar situations, working with new homeowners, movers and utility companies to ensure that the transplants can "hit the ground running."

That the Charlottesville area has a preponderance of busy, affluent people - with more arriving all the time - gives both women hope for their business.

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