Ever since Google launched Universal Search, SEMs have been trying to leverage it to get their site into the first position within the vertical search engine that is ranking in the top slot.
So for searches like new york hotel where Google Local results dominate the top of the first page, securing a spot in those results may be critical to your SEO campaign for those search terms.
One webmaster posted a thread at WebmasterWorld that suggests his local result, along with the 8 other competitors of his, were "hacked" out of the listing. He explained that a new site popped out of no where, somehow displaying all the other sites. He did notice this weird behavior:
I checked the reviews for the site which has appeared all of a sudden and all of the 475 reviews are guest reviews for a large local hotel. It looks like someone has somehow hacked the local business listing for the hotel and changed the contact info to their own.
Forum administrator, Tedster, thinks it may be a data import issue - while some others feel it may be some sort of Google Maps spam.
This has been reported to Google and they are looking into the issue. Google maps is known to be plagued with spam issues.
Forum discussion at WebmasterWorld.