Danny reported on Google Tests New Local Ads On Maps which describes that when some people do a search on hotels new york in Google Local, and Google Maps comes up with blue balloons that represent the blue backgrounded sponsored results. Since I am in New York, I believe I can see it, here is a screen capture for you all.
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I personally find this very cool and I am glad they are labeled so clearly.
Forum discussion at Search Engine Watch Forums.
Update: added a thread at our forum asking Are Sponsored Results in Google Maps / Local a Good Thing?