Poet, author and playwright OFELIA FOX, who rose to fame as the first lady of Tinseltown's famous Havana Tropicana nightclub, has died aged 82.

The writer died on Monday (09JAN06) of cancer and complications from diabetes at Providence St Joseph Medical Centre in Burbank, California.

She will be remembered for her memoir TROPICANA NIGHTS, THE LIFE AND TIMES OF THE LEGENDARY CUBAN NIGHTCLUB, co-written with ROSA LOWINGER, which recounted life at the legendary hotspot for 1950s Hollywood stars Nat King Cole, Ava Gardner, Tyrone Power and Ernest Hemingway.